Modern Japanese Sword Tanto Signed by Korekazu with Tokubetsu Hozon Certificate
This blade was forged by Fujiwara Korekazu (藤原是一), also known as the seventh-gen Ishido Korekazu in the 10th year of the Meiji era (1877). The seventh-gen Korekazu, who was active at the end of the Edo period, is especially highly regarded among Japanese sword experts because of his superb craftsmanship. The 7th-gen Korekazu is also known as Unjyu Korekazu. The 7th-gen Korekazu’s real name is Masataro, and he was born in 1820 and learned the sword-forging technique from his uncle Kato Cho Unsai Tsuna Toshi, who lived in Dewano Kuni(Today’s Yamagata prefecture).Later on, he became a son-in-law of 6th-gen Ishido Korekazu and eventually took over Edo Ishido school. Seventh-gen Korekazu forged swords up until the early Meiji period. He died at the age of 75 in the 24th year of the Meiji era (1891).
The 7th-gen Korekazu was ordered to forge a sword for Ise Shrine in Mie prefecture and Toshogu Shrine in Tochigi prefecture.
And he was allowed to inscribe the Tokugawa family emblem on these swords. Furthermore, in 1854, he was ordered to forge a sword for sending to the USA and created Naginata for the UK, which was gifts from Japan for diplomatic relations. This fact indicates that Korekazu was one of the Edo government’s trusted swordsmiths and played an essential role at the end of the Edo period.
The 7th-gen Korekazu was a great master as well because he trained quite a few renowned swordsmiths, such as Katsumura Norikatsu. His sword style is called Bizen-Den, and he was great at forging blades with Choji Midare Hamon, which makes Bizen DEN special.
When Korekazu started his career, it was the end of the Edo period when the military government of Samurai (Tokugawa Shogunate) controlled Japan, and feudal society was the norm. There was plenty of demand of weapons from Samurai back then. However, in 1868, there was a civil war between Tokugawa’s Shogunate government and the new Meiji imperial government. After this battle, the Tokugawa shogunate was ousted, and the imperial government gained control. The whole feudal system was dismantled, and the new government took the social status of Samurai. The demand for Japanese swords decreased dramatically from the beginning of the Meiji era. Many swordsmiths lost their jobs or changed their career. However, Korekazu kept forging swords to keep the tradition of Japanese sword-forging alive.
The first gen Ishido Korekazu
The first-gen Korekazu was originally from Omi Koku(Today’s Shiga prefecture). It is said that he was a descendant of Ichimonji Sukemune(一文字助宗) from Bizen Koku(Today’s Okayama prefecture). He moved to Edo and founded Edo Ishido school at the beginning of the Edo period.
This school flourished during the whole Edo period and became one of the most popular ones in Edo city, Musashi Koku. Ishido Korekazu became an Okakaekaji for the Edo government in 1721, exclusively forging swords for the Tokugawa clan. In total, the smith name “Korekazu” lasted 8th generations.
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 the Habaki is made of wood. If you prefer to have a metal one, please contact us prior to your purchase.
Cutting Edge Length(Nagasa)：22.8 cm (8.9 inches)
Curvature(Sori)： 0.0 cm (0.0 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.
This Fuchi Kashira is made from copper, and its brown metal color and golden colorings make an elegant appearance to this work. Peony flowers are engraved gorgeously on both Fuchi and Kashira parts. Peony represents happiness, wealth, nobleness, and gorgeousness. This flower pattern has been treated as a kind of good-omen motif; people regarded it as a rich harvest sign. Peony is called “Botan” in Japanese. When we write this flower’s name in Japanese, its second letter means mountain hermit medicine to give us eternal youth. Based on the meaning of this letter, the peony pattern symbolizes eternal youth and longevity.
Tsuka and Menuki：Tsuka is the handle of the Japanese sword and Menuki is its decoration.
Same as the Fuchi Kashira, the motifs of this Menuki are also peony flowers. Although some colorings have already faded due to aging, it seems the gold paint was initially applied to petals and leaves. It has been the subject of poetry, literature, and paintings since ancient times, and it came to be used as a pattern for clothing items in the Heian period (794-1185). We would say the peony has been one of the classical motifs for Japanese people for a long time.
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.
This Tsuba has a simple look. It seems it is made from copper, the same as the Fuchi Kashira. Therefore, it matches well with the color of Fuchi Kashira when this Tsuba is stored in the handle.
*Please keep in mind that the Habaki is made of wood. If you prefer to have a metal one, please contact us prior to your purchase.
Kozuka：Kozuka is a small knife stored in Kozuka Hitsu(groove of the sheath of the Japanese sword).
A Kogatana (小刀, small knife) is stored in the Kozuka (小柄). The Sensu (扇子, fan) is the motif of this Kozuka. You would find four fans on the front of it. This motif has been favored as an auspicious pattern representing development and prosperity. During the Heian period (794-1185/1192), aristocrats enjoyed elegant plays with fans, and they appreciated the fan itself as a noble item. A fan has a characteristic shape, and it is called Suehirogari (末広がり) in Japanese. Based on the idea that this shape implies a perspective of the future, people appreciate this design. The fan pattern also represents wealth because it was once available only for high-ranked people. In addition, people enjoy drawing various motifs such as animals, plants, geometric patterns, and auspicious patterns on the fan surface. That might also be why the fan motif is popular.
Saya： Saya is the scabbard for the Japanese sword.
Authentication Paper：NBTHK TOKUBETSU Hozon Certificate for the blade (No. 1018116)
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 Jun. 3rd in the 4th year of Reiwa (2022). 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 : Tokyo 106990
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.
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.”
【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 500 Japanese swords for the past three years (～2023) 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 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.
We have shipped authentic Japanese swords to the USA, UK, Canada, Mexico, 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 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.
*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.
【How To Contact Us】
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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.
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.