KATANA WITH BODY TEST INSCRIPTION

IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE

1ST GENERATION / SHODAI

(SHOHO 1644 MUSASHI) SHINTO JOSAKU

NBTHK HOZON-TO PAPERS

 

STYLE: SHINOGI ZUKURI
 

MEI: IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE

URA: BODY TEST INSCRIPTION

FUTATSU DO KIRI OTOSHI FUATABE

YAMANO KAEMON NO JO NAGAHISA (KAO)

JO-O SHI NEN DO U GATSU NI KU BI

NAGASA: 62.5cm

OVERALL: 76.88cm

SORI: 0.625cm

NAKAGO: UBU

MEKUGI ANA: TWO

MUNE: IORI

HADA: KO-ITAME

HAMON: WIDE SUGUBA, NIOI WITH NIE

KISSAKI: CHU KISSAKI

BOSHI: KO-MARU WITH KAERI KATAI

HORIMONO URA: GOMBASHI AND BONJI

HORIMONO OMOTE: SO NO KURIKARA (DRAGON ON KEN)

MIHABA: 3.125cm

KASANE: 0.625cm

IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE

1ST GENERATION / SHODAI

OFFERED HERE IS A KATANA BY ONE OF THE TOP THREE SWORD SMITH'S OF THE EDO PERIOD (1664-1876).

THIS CLAIM IS ACCORDING TO THE NBTHK AND DOCUMENTED IN THE TOKEN BIJUTSU, IN AN ARTICLE BY TANOBE MICHIHIRO, HEAD OF THE NBTHK. THE ARTICLE STATES THAT KANESHIGE WAS ONE OF THE TOP THREE SWORD SMITH'S OF THE EDO PERIOD (1664-1876), "IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE WAS THE THIRD MAJOR EDO-KAJI COMING NEXT TO YASUTSUGU AND HANKEI". 

UNTIL RECENT YEARS IT WAS THOUGHT  IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE AND KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE WERE ONE AND THE SAME PERSON. AGAIN, THANKS TO THE RELENTLESS RESEARCH OF TANOBE MICHIHIRO OF THE NBTHK, THIS THEORY WAS DISPROVED AND DISCARDED.

IT HAD BEEN LONG THOUGHT THAT IZUMI NO KAMI HAD DROPPED THE "IZUMI NO KAMI" TITLE AND BEGAN USING KAZUSA NO KAMI OR KAZUSA NO SUKE. THIS WAS THOUGHT TO HAVE BEEN DONE OUT OF RESPECT FOR HIS LORD WHO USED THE SAME TITLE, "TODO IZUMI NO KAMI TAKATORA". HOWEVER, IT IS WELL DOCUMENTED THAT LORD TAKATORA PASSED AWAY IN KAN'EI 7. KANESHIGE STILL SIGNED USING THE "IZUMI NO KAMI" TITLE IN KAN'EI 17, TEN YEARS AFTER THE DEATH OF HIS LORD.

FURTHER PROOF THAT THEY WERE TWO SEPARATE SMITH'S COMES FROM A GASSAKU WAKIZASHI MADE AS A CO WORK OF KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE AND SANDAI YASUTSUGU. THIS WAKIZASHI IS SIGNED, "TSUJI KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE YONJU SANSAI (43 YEARS OLD) EDO NI OITE KORE O TSUKURU / YASUTSUGU SHIMOSAKA ICHI NO JO SANJU HASSAI (38 YEARS OLD) BUSHU EDO NI OITE KORE O TSUKURU.

COMPARED WITH A KATANA MADE BY SANDAI YASUTSUGU AT AGE 37 IN KANBUN 6, WOULD INDICATE THAT THE WAKIZASHI MADE AS A CO-WORK BY KANESHIGE AND YASUTSUGU WAS MADE IN KANBUN 7 (1667).

USING THIS INFORMATION TO CORRELATE AGES OF THE SMITHS WITH SWORD PRODUCTION DATES, IT HAS BEEN CONFIRMED THAT KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE WAS BORN KAN'EI 2 (1625).

THE EARLIEST DATED WORK OF IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE, WAS A NAGINATA DATED KAN'EI 2 (1625). THIS WOULD CLEARLY INDICATE THAT IZUMI NO KAMI AND KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE WERE TWO DISTINCT INDIVIDUALS.

IT IS MOST LIKELY THAT KAZUSA NO SUKE KANESHIGE WAS  EITHER THE SON OR A STUDENT OF IZUMI NO KAMI, AND EVENTUALLY  BECAME THE NIDAI OF THE SCHOOL.

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SWORDS BY KANESHIGE WERE ROUTINELY USED FOR BODY TESTS. MANY RECEIVED TAMESHIGIRI (CUTTING TEST) MEI INSCRIBED  IN GOLD.  THIS FACT STANDS AS TESTAMENT TO THE AWESOME CUTTING ABILITY OF KANESHIGE'S BLADES.

THESE TESTS WERE DONE BY THE FAMOUS YAMANO FAMILY OF SWORD TESTERS. THIS PARTICULAR SWORD WAS TESTED BY THE MOST FAMOUS OF THE YAMANO FAMILY, "YAMANO KAUEMON NAGAHISA".

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THIS SWORD IS ACCOMPANIED BY HOZON-TO PAPERS BY THE NBTHK, ATTESTING TO THE AUTHENTICITY OF THE MEI.

IZUMI NO KAMI KANESHIGE

1ST GENERATION / SHODAI

NBTHK HOZON-TO PAPERS

BODY TEST INSCRIPTION