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Updated: 21 Jul 2024

Antique Japanese Sword Tanto Signed by Rai Kunimitsu
NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate

$27,291.35

DELIVERY TIME : Approx. 1-1.5 months
*We ship from Tokyo, Japan. There might be delay in shipment depending on countries.

SHIPPING TO :
USA, Canada, Mexico, Germany , Belgium, France, Finland, Hong Kong, Australia
*Please contact us prior to purchase if your country isn’t listed.

INCLUDED : NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate , Koshirae Case (Decorative Sword Mounting), Shirasaya Case, Traditional Sword Carrying Case, Sword Maintenance Kit, Full Exportation Support

Category Tanto (KOTO)
Age  late Kamakura- early Nanbokucho period (1326-1351)
Swordsmith Rai Kunimitsu (来国光)
Certificate NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate
Location Yamashiro province ( Today’s Kyoto Prefecture)
Blade Size Cutting Edge Length: 25.7 cm  ( 10.1 inches)
Curvature: 0 cm (0 inches) 

More photos& videos available on request. Please feel free to contact us. 

In stock

Antique Japanese Sword Tanto Signed by Rai Kunimitsu with NBTHK Tokubestsu Hozon Certificate

【Description】

 This blade was signed by Rai Kunimitsu (来国光) who was active during the late Kamakura- early Nanbokucho period (1326-1351). He belonged to Rai school, which was prosperous in Yamashiro province (Kyoto prefecture) during the mid-Kamakura-Nanbokucho period. Rai Kunimitsu was the second son of Rai Kunitoshi, and he was also known as Jiro Hyoueno Jo. Rai school was originally founded by Rai Kuniyuki and was taken over by Rai Kunitoshi, and then Kunimitsu became the head of the school in his career.

 Three of his signed works are designated national treasures of Japan, and 22 swords are classified as Important Cultural Property.

 Yamashiro province was famous for its sword making style called YAMASHIRO-DEN. YAMASHIRO-DEN’s origin dates back to the Heian period (794 A.D), when the capital city was moved from Nara to Kyoto. The swordsmiths in Yamashiro province initially prospered by forging swords for court nobles and imperial families. Later on, they also forged swords for feudal lords after Samurai military government took control of Japan. There are so many renowned swordsmiths from this region.

 It is said that the founder of YAMASHIRO-DEN was Sanjo Munechika. And there are seven prestigious schools in this region. One of them is Rai school, where Kunimitsu belonged. Rai school and Aawata school are the most prestigious ones among YAMASHIRO-DEN. One of the most characteristics of YAMASHIRO-DEN is its elegant design and beautiful Jigane. This blade represents strong trait of YAMASHIRO-DEN. 

 

 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. 

 

*Please keep in mind that there is a minor Kitae Kizu on the blade. If you like to know the detailed condition, please feel free to contact us.

 

【Blade】
Cutting Edge Length(Nagasa)25.7 cm  ( 10.1 inches)
Curvature(Sori)0 cm (0 inches) 


 

Hamon
The crystalline structure which forms along the cutting edge of a blade as a result of the hardening process
Jimon(Jihada)
visible steel surface pattern created by folding and hammering during forging process



Kissaki: Kissaki is the tip of the Japanese sword.

 

NakagoNakago 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-KashiraA pair of matching sword fittings that cover the upper and bottom parts of its sword hilt.

*Please keep in mind that the black lacquer is partially missing on the Fuchi. We will be happy to have it restored before shipping it to you. We would like you to keep in mind that there might be trace of restoration.


Tsuka and MenukiTsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.

 The theme of the Menuki and Kozuka is Botan (牡丹, peony) flower and Karajishi (唐獅子). The combination of Botan and Karajishi is called  Karajishi Botan (唐獅子牡丹).

 Peony represents happiness, wealth, nobleness, and gorgeousness. This flower pattern has been treated as a good-omen motif; people regarded it as a rich harvest sign. As mentioned above, a peony is called the Botan in Japanese. When we write this flower’s name in Kanji characters, its second letter means mountain hermit medicine that would give us eternal youth. Based on the meaning of this letter, the peony pattern symbolizes eternal youth and longevity.

 About the Karajishi, the Shishi (獅子) means a lion in Japanese, and the Karajishi is a lion brought from the Continent to Japan in the Toh period (唐, Tang dynasty, 618-907). The Karajishi typically has curly hair for its head, neck, body, and tail. In Buddhism, the Karajishi is regarded as a symbol of wisdom, and the Monju Bosatu (文殊菩薩, Manjushri Bodhisattva) rides lions. According to a theory, the Kara-Jishi originates from the Komainu (狛犬, stone guardian dogs that exorcize evil spirits). There is a Houwa (法話, Buddhist monks tell the story of Buddhism in an easy-to-understand manner) that treats the Karajishi and this flower. The lion is called the king of the beasts. However, even this invincible animal has only one fear: a bug in the lion’s body. This pest grows in the lion’s hair and eventually breaks the skin and bites the flesh. Nevertheless, it dies if it is exposed to the night dew of a peony. Therefore, the lion rests under peony flowers at night, looking for a haven. The design of these sword mountings might have been quoted from this story.

HabakiHabaki is the equipment to make the blade not touch its scabbard inside. It prevents the blade from getting rusty and chipped. 

 A family emblem is designed on this Habaki. This type of the family crest is categorized as Yotsume Bishi (四ツ目菱). Yotsume means Four eyes in Japanese. This name comes from the fact that there are four dots in each square shape in this family crest. Bishi is a water chestnut. Initially, this pattern was used for kimonos when dyeing fabric in ancient times. One of the most famous feudal lords who used this family crest is the Takeda family, who took control of Kai province (Today’s Yamanashi prefecture) during the Sengoku Jidai (Warring state period). Two parts are connected to make the openwork of this family crest more visible.

 

KozukaKozuka is a small knife stored in Kozuka Hitsu(groove of the sheath of the Japanese sword).

Saya Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.  

Authentication PaperNBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate for the blade (No. 1003452)

 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 March 26th in the 27th year of Heisei  (2015). 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 : Chiba 6332
 The Board of Education in Chiba 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.


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【About us】
 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 700 Japanese swords for the past few years (~2024) 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.

【Payment Method】
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 CHF 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.

【Shipping】
 We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, Canada, Mexico, Germany , Belgium, France, Finland, Hong Kong, 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 EMS. 

 We normally ship by EMS(Express Mail Service) provided by Japan Post. We will send you a tracking number for your order as soon as we hand it to the post office. 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 contact us first and click here to know the detail.

【Review】
 Here is one of the reviews we received from a customer who purchased an authentic Japanese sword from us. For more reviews, please click here.
“My experience overall with the whole process was wonderful. I had many questions about the history and process to purchase these treasures. All my questions were answered very timely and complete. The staff is very knowledgeable and very well versed if any questions do arise.”

【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.

【How To Contact Us】
 Please contact us through email, Facebook Messenger or Live Chat if you have any questions. You can find each icon on the right side of the website. Please click one of them to reach us. We will reply to you within 1-2 business days.

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.

 

MORE ANTIQUE JAPANESE SWORD FOR SALE

SWORDS WITHOUT CERTIFICATES FOR SALE

READ KATANA ARCHIVE ARTICLE(Episode1-8)

LEARN JAPANESE SWORD TERMINOLOGY

 

 Thank you for reading all the information on the page. If you have any difficulty choosing the right Japanese sword for you, we will be more than happy to help you find the one that speaks to you the most. Please feel free to contact us.

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