Antique Japanese Sword Katana Signed by Yasuyoshi with Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate
This blade was signed by Bushu Jyu Yasuyoshi (武州住安儀), who was especially active during the Enpo era (Early Edo period: 1673-1681). Bushu Jyu means that he lived in Bushu domain (today’s Tokyo). He was an apprentice of Yamato no Kami Yasusada (大和守安定), one of the most famous swordsmiths in the early Edo period.
It is said that Yasuyoshi regularly did Daisaku for his master, Yasusada. That means that his master highly acknowledged Yasuyoshi’s craftmanship. Daisaku is a regular act where an apprentice or a child of the swordsmith signed his master’s name with his master’s permission or forged a blade on behalf of the master. That is also why there aren’t many remaining blades signed by Yasuyoshi, who dedicated his career to helping his master.
We also presume that Yasuyoshi might have received his sword maker’s name “安(Yasu)” from Yasusada.
Yamato no Kami Yasusada (His master)
Yamato no Yasusada belonged to Kishu Ishido School, one of Ishido school’s branches. Ishido school was initially founded by Sukenaga, an offspring of Ichimonji Sukemune, who had created Fukuoka Ichimonji school in Bizen province(Today’s Okayama prefecture).
During 1492-1501 (Mid Muromachi period), Sukenaga and his school moved from Bizen province to Omi province after being summoned by Gamou family, a powerful feudal line in that region. Sukenaga started to live in front of Ishido temple, and he changed his surname to Ishido.
As of the early Edo period, many Ishido swordsmiths in Omi province moved to other parts of Japan. Four major branches flourished: Edo, Osaka, Kishu(Wakayama prefecture), and Chikuzen(Fukuoka prefecture). Following this trend, Yasuhiro, a prominent figure in Omi Ishido school and the father of Yasusada, moved to Kishu province from Omi province. It is said that Yasuhiro was the founder of Kishu Ishido school. In his early career, Yasusada served Kishu domain with his father.
In the third year of the Shouho era (1646), Yasuhiro and Yasusada moved to Edo city. Since then, Yasusada lived in Edo city, working under prominent swordsmiths, such as the third-gen Yasutsugu and Izumi no Kami Kaneshige.
Considering Yasusada was a renowned swordsmith, letting Yasuyoshi forge blades on his behalf, we believe Yauyoshi was also a high-skilled swordsmith. This blade also comes with beautiful auspicious dragon-themed sword mounting.
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)： 61.5 cm( 24.2 inches)
Curvature(Sori)：0.8 cm( 0.31 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 whole sword mounting has dragon design. Initially, the dragon is an imaginary creature found in ancient foreign traditions or myths. Furthermore, it is regarded as a symbol 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 the Mizuchi (蛟, a mythical animal in Japan that looks like a snake and has 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.
Tsuka and Menuki：Tsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.
As mentioned above, this Menuki’s motif is also the dragon. The entire of this Menuki is colored with golden paint and remains this coloring relatively in good condition. In Japan, there is a belief that worships a dragon as a water god. Since rice cultivation has flourished in this country, water is always an essential resource. Therefore, the dragon motif has been familiar to Japanese people for a long time. Understandably, this dignified beast motif is seen in many sword mountings. It shows lots of Samurais appreciated this design.
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.
Oval-shaped Tsuba that has Kozuka and Kougai holes. Golden coloring is applied to the outline of the Tsuba, Kozuka hole, Kougai hole, and clouds. It seems dragons’ bodies were also initially colored with the same color. This Tsuba has the signature of Ichiryu Tomoyoshi (一柳友善), whose name lasted 6th generations from the Edo period to Taisho period. Tomoyoshi was a famous metal worker in Mito domain (today’s Ibaraki prefecture). The most famous one is 4th generation.
Saya： Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.
Raden technique is applied on this Saya. It is a kind of decorative technique that is often used for traditional craftworks. It uses the pearl part of seashells and put it into the engraved surface of lacquer or wood. Thanks to its iridescent luster, it gives a luxurious look to works.
Authentication Paper：NBTHK TOKUBETSU Hozon Certificate for the blade (No. 1009897)
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 Dec 10th in the 30th year of Heisei (2018). They appraised it as Tokubetsu Hozon Touken, the blade especially worth preserving for Japanese society. The purchaser will receive these original certificates as well. We can also translate what is written into English and make a PDF file for your record if you request.
Registration Number : Tokyo 308969
The Board of Education in Tokyo 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 400 Japanese swords for the past three years (～2022) 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, CAD,EUR or GBP. The price is set in Japanese Yen. Prices in other currencies are automatically calculated based on the latest exchange rate.
* If the amount is above 1 million JPY, Stripe or wire transfer will be the only options for payment.
We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, Canada, Mexico, UK, Germany, Switzerland, France, Hong Kong and Australia. 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.
* If you live in Australia and like to purchase an authentic Japanese sword, please click here to know the detail.
* If you live in the UK and like to purchase an authentic Japanese sword, please click here to know the detail.
*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 Whetstone Powder, Peg remover, Oil Applicator). By watching the video instruction above , you can enjoy learning how to maintain your Japanese sword while appreciating it. If you have any difficulty assembling the sword or cleaning the blade, you can feel free to contact us.
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