Antique Japanese Sword Katana Signed by Moriyuki with Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate
This blade was forged by Seiryushi Tachibana Moriyuki(青龍子橘盛之). According to historical records, Moriyuki was active at sword-forging in the late Edo period, especially Keio era(1865-1868). He lived in Iwami koku(石見国), located in the western part of Shimane prefecture today. Iwami koku was famous for the high-quality carbon steel it produced. We presume Moriyuki had easy access to this exceptionally great carbon steel to create his swords. He called himself Seiryushi, meaning a child of a blue dragon.
Japan enjoyed a relatively peaceful time from the early Edo period to the mid-Edo period(the 1600s-1760s) because of the stable economy and the powerful government run by Tokugawa Shogunate. Samurai didn’t have many opportunities to utilize his Katana sword in public or on battlefields during this time. Thus, they carried their swords more as a symbol of their social status. The demand for blades decreased accordingly compared to the previous Warring state period called Sengoku Jidai(1467-1600).
However, toward the end of the Edo period(1764-1876), the Japanese sword’s role changed dramatically. With the poverty spreading and political turmoil in Japan, there were so many riots initiated by the civilians. Japanese swords started to play an essential role in maintaining public safety. Pressure from foreign countries to open Japanese borders also forced Samurai to order strong-looking blades to survive this tumultuous time. We believe many swordsmiths made great efforts to forged high-quality, practical swords for their masters to prepare for battles. Moriyuki must have been one of them.
There was a civil war between Tokugawa’s military government and the new Meiji government at the end of the Edo period. That means the original owner of this Katana might have seen the moment when Samurai’s life changed forever. This blade has a strong looking and must have been practical to use in that demanding time.
This blade is appraised as a Tokubetsu Hozon Token(特別保存刀剣) issued by NBTHK(Nihon Bijutsu Touken Hozon Kyokai:日本美術刀剣保存協会). This authentication paper was only given to authentic Japanese swords, especially well preserved and high quality with artistic value.
Cutting Edge Length(Nagasa)：69.8 cm( 28.2 inches)
Curvature(Sori)： 1.6 cm(0.47 inches)
The crystalline structure which forms along the cutting edge of a blade as a result of the hardening process
visible steel surface pattern created by folding and hammering during forging process
Nakago：Nakago is the tang of the Japanese sword.
Japanese swordsmiths left the black rust on the tang because it prevents red rust while the tang is in its handle. And the discoloration of the tang was created over time, and it is a great indicator for a Japanese sword specialist to estimate when the sword was forged.
Koshirae: Koshirae is the mounting of the Japanese sword. There are several parts that consist of Koshirae such as Saya(Scabbard), Tsuka( Handle), Tsuba(Handguard).
Fuchi-Kashira：A pair of matching sword fittings that cover the upper and bottom parts of its sword hilt.
The Gosan-no Kiri (五三の桐) and chrysanthemum are designed for this Fuchi Kashira. Although some parts of gold were already flaked off due to aging, it seems this Fuchi Kashira initially had a gorgeous look.
The Kiri (桐, paulownia) pattern is composed of three standing straight inflorescences and three leaves. The number of blooming flowers at each inflorescence represents the ranks of this design. For example, the Goshichi-no Kiri (五七の桐) pattern has five-seven-five flowers for inflorescences. So that this is a more high-ranked design than Gosan-no Kiri (three-five-three flowers) pattern, this motif is known as the symbolic design of the Japanese government. It is also famous that one of the most popular Samurais in Japan: Toyotomi Hideyoshi used the Kiri pattern for his family crest. This plant pattern was once used by the imperial family and national leaders of the time.
A long time ago, the chrysanthemum was used as a medicine for obtaining a long life, and it was brought to Japan from the continent with this thought in the Nara period (648-781). Chrysanthemum symbolizes fall, and people appreciate it very much since ancient times. As its petals form radially, the chrysanthemum has been likened to the sun. That is why this flower pattern is treated as the symbol of perpetual youth and longevity or good health. The Goson-no Kiri and chrysanthemum, both these motifs are appreciated as noble patterns still today.
Tsuka and Menuki：Tsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.
This Menuki’s motif is the bird that has a characteristic appearance. It might be theHouou (鳳凰, Fenghuang). Houou is a member of four fantasy animals, which is called “Shirei (四霊)” with Kirin (麒麟, Qilin), Kame (亀, Turtle), and Ryu (龍, Dragon), and it is a god beast looks like a combination of chicken and peacock. According to a theory, Houou’s body matches the celestial body: its head was considered to be the sky, its eyes to the sun, its back to the moon, its legs to the earth, and its tail to the planet. Therefore, people thought Houou would connect this world and the heavens.
Houou was considered an auspicious sign in ancient China, and it was believed that Houou would show up when the brilliant emperor appeared. People appreciate its graceful shape in Japan.
Tsuba and Habaki：Tsuba is the handguard for the Japanese Sword and Habaki is the equipment to make the blade not touch its scabbard inside. It prevents the blade from getting rusty and chipped.
The dragon and clouds are designed for this Tsuba. Initially, a dragon is an imaginary creature found in ancient Chinese traditions or myths. Furthermore, it is a symbolic beast of auspicious signs. Its body is likened to nine animals: antlers are deer, the head is a camel, eyes are demons, the neck is a snake, belly is Mizuchi (蛟, mythical animal in Japan which looks like a snake and have a horn and four legs), scales are fish, claws are falcons, palms are tigers, and ears are cows. It was thought that the dragon would reign at the top of all animals because of its odd-looking appearance.
Also, in Japan, there is a belief that worships dragon as a water god and is called Ryujin Shinkou (竜神信仰). Since rice cultivation has been flourished in this country, water is always an essential resource. So that the dragon motif has been familiar with Japanese people since a long time ago, we would like to guess that it might be why the combination of dragon and clouds is often seen even in sword mountings.
Kougai：Kougai is the equipment for Samurai to arrange or fix his hair style.
Saya： Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.
Please keep in mind that you can see some aging on this scabbard. If you like to see the detailed condition, please feel free to contact us.
Authentication Paper：NBTHK TOKUBETSU Hozon Certificate for the blade
NBTHK, also known as Nihon Bijutsu Touken Hozon Kyokai (the Society for the Preservation of the Japan Art Sword), is one of the oldest Japanese sword appraising organizations in modern-day Japan. They authenticated the blade on August 28th in the second year of Reiwa (2020). They appraised it as Tokubetsu Hozon Touken, the blade especially worth preserving for Japanese society. The purchaser will receive this original certificate as well. We can also translate what is written into English and make a PDF file for your record if you request.
Registration Number : Nagano 92026
The Board of Education in Nagano prefecture issued a registration paper for this sword . It is called Jyu Token Rui Torokusho(銃刀剣類登録証). Bunkacho(The Agency for Cultural Affairs) acknowledges a Japanese sword with this paper as a work of art.
The sword needs to be traditionally hand-forged and made of Tamahagane carbon steel to be registered in the system. With this paper, its owner in Japan can legally own an authentic Japanese sword. Based on this registration number, we will apply for its export permit.
This paper will need to be returned to the board of education when the sword is being shipped abroad, but you can receive a copy of it. An English translation of this registration paper is available on request.
Samurai Museum is located in Tokyo, Japan, exhibiting antique artifacts related to the Samurai history. Samurai Museum Shop is the place for those who are interested in Japanese culture and craftsmanship. We deal with antique Samurai swords/armor, traditional crafts made in Japan and so on.
【Japanese Sword& Export Process】
The Japanese swords we deal with are hand-forged edged swords made in Japan. It was made from the traditional carbon steel called TAMAHAGANE(玉鋼). Samurai Museum is familiar with the proper legal procedure for an antique/ authentic Japanese sword to be exported from Japan. We have sent more than 350 Japanese swords to amazing owners who appreciate its historical value.
Each Japanese sword is registered under the Agency for Cultural Affairs and the Board of Education in Japan.They issue a registration paper for each Japanese sword for its owner in Japan to legally possess it. The Japanese sword with its registration paper means it was traditionally hand-forged in Japan.
To legally export the sword from Japan to other countries, we will have to apply for its permit to the Agency for Cultural Affairs(Bunkacho) and return the original registration paper to the Board of Education. It normally takes around 2-4 weeks to receive this permit after submitting required documents. And we would like you to expect at least 1-1.5 months for your order to arrive at your given address after you ordered. For more detailed info, please click here.
It is allowed for residents in Japan to own authentic Japanese swords without a special license as long as they come with registration papers. Please feel free to contact us if you are a resident of Japan, whether temporarily or permanently. We will also assist you when you leave Japan and need to obtain the export permit.
We accept payment through Stripe (Credit card), PayPal, Apple Pay or ChromePay, all of which are secure payment methods. Also, you don’t need to make an account on Stripe for the checkout. If you prefer other payment method, please contact us. After confirming your payment, we will apply for an export permit. You may either pay in JPY, USD, AUD, EUR or GBP. The price is set in Japanese Yen. Prices in other currencies are automatically calculated based on the latest exchange rate.
We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, Canada, Mexico, UK, Germany , France and Hong Kong. If you don’t live in these countries and like to order, please contact us first before making a purchase. We offer Free International Shipping as long as we can send antique Japanese swords by either EMS or FedEx(Canada).
We normally ship by EMS(Express Mail Service) provided by Japan Post. When we receive an order from the Canada we will use FedEx instead as EMS temporarily stops shipping from Japan to those countries due to COVID-19.
We will send you a tracking number for your order as soon as we hand it to the post office/FedEx. We will put 100 % insurance on the shipping document without any extra charge. Based on the total amount, there might be a duty tax or other fee for you to pay, depending on the countries. We use package cushioning to protect the item and put it in a PVC pipe, which is one of the most secure packages because of its durability.
It will normally takes 5-14 days for the item to arrive at your given address after we dispatch it. Time of delivery is estimated as accurately as possible by the carrier but does not take into account any delays beyond our control such as by inclement weather, post office holiday seasons.
*Please keep in mind that due to the spread of COVID-19, there might be delays in shipping. If you like to know the detail about shipping, please feel free to ask us.
【How to make sure the condition】
Please keep in mind that what you are going to purchase is an antique item. We uploaded high resolution photos for you to check its condition thoroughly. If you like to see more photos with different angles, please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to send them to you so that you can make informed decision. It is essential for us to know that you are happy with your choice of a sword. and we are prepared to use the best of our ability to serve you.
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【The Art of Nihonto(Japanese Sword)】
Samurai’s history is a profound, eloquent legacy of ancient Japanese warriors in which millions of people worldwide are being fascinated. If you like to find out the art of Nihonto, please click here.
【A Guide to Japanese Sword Maintenance】
After acquiring an genuine Japanese sword, it is also important to know how to take good care of it. Here is the special video for you. Mr. Paul Martin, Japanese sword expert, shows you how to give proper maintenance to your sword. By mastering how to clean the Japanese sword, its aesthetic beauty will last forever.
When you purchase a Japanese sword from us, you can get a Free Japanese sword maintenance kit. It comes with four tools(Choji Oil, Uchiko Powder, Peg remover, Oil Applicator). By watching the video instruction above , you can enjoy learning how to maintain your Japanese sword while appreciating it.