Sun'nobi Tanto signed KANEMICHI-saku with) Gold leaf chaff Makie lacquer work scabbard Koshi'katana Koshirae

Koto End of Muromachi period (Eiroku era/circa 1558-) Mino
Length of cutting edge 31.5cm Curvature 0.3cm Width of base 28.6mm Thickness of base 5.7mm

with) Gold leaf chaff Makie lacquer work scabbard Koshi'katana Koshirae



Blade construction: Hira-zukuri, Iori-mune. Width of base is a bit on wider side and thickness is in average. Extrra long Sun'nobi Tanto where upper Fukura area is swelling out in full. There is a middle pointed curvature slightly and upper pointed curve as well. There is a pair of Bo-hi grooves starting from lower level on both sides that are chiselled half way to the tang. The entire shape creates majestic manner of Azuchi-Momoyama period in the end of 16th century. (click HERE for higher resolution image of the entire blade)
Forging(Hada): Forging is conspicuous Itame-hada mixing with large Mokume and outstanding Masame ware mostly appears along Mune side. The surface is covered with sparkling Ji-nie that generates darkish Nie lines along grain mark so called CHIKEI activity. Diffused reflection of whitish "Shirake-Utsuri" appears from the quench starting point of Hamachi.
Temper(Hamon): Temper is undulating narrow waist Gunome Choji with some indication of Tobiyaki splash and part of Togari-ha appears. Sparkling Nie accumulates thickly on the gorges of Gunome-outline where shows short or long lines of Nie "Sunagashi" and "Kinsen" activity. The interior of temper is full of misty "Nioi". The entire temper gives off the impression of dignified manner.
Temper of tip(Boshi): Temper of the tip forms irregular line of Gunome sharpens up to form small circle where short lines of Nie, Hakikake appears that turns back deeply like a side view of "Jizou stone stature".
Tang(Nakago): Nakago is in UBU original. Checked (Higaki) file marks. Two peg holes (upper is an original). Double-bevelled (Kurijiri) heel shape. Back ridge of Nakago is flat. The signature in front is chiselled three character that reads KANEMICHI-saku 兼道作
KANEMICHI 兼道 (later changed to DAIDŌ 大道), been said the 9th generation of Shizu-saburo KANEUJI 志津三郎兼氏 is renowned as the most superior maker who equals to KANETSUNE 兼常 and KANEFUSA 兼房 in Mino domain. His posthumous works signed KANEMICHI 兼道 with the date of year ranges from Tenbun 16 (1547) to Eiroku 5 (1562).
From the reference of DAIDŌ-KI 大道記, he offered the dagger to Emperor Ōgimachi 正親町天皇 on Eiroku 12, Spring (1569) and was granted a word of Ō 大 with the Emperor and official district Mutsunokami 陸奥守 title by the Imperial Court. He had put a honor word of Ō 大 prefixed to his smith name to be Ō-KANEMICHI 大兼道 only a couple of years during Genki era (1570-72) and then put an official title "Mutsunokami" 陸奥守 and changed his smith name as "DAIDO" 大道 on after Tensho 1 (1573). The posthumous works with the date of year as the inscription of Mutsunokami DAIDO 陸奥守大道 ranges from Tensho 1 - 19 (1573-91).
The places of his studio, initially was in Seki town and later had moved to Gifu and he finally concluded to Kyoto as the founder of Mishina school during Bunroku era (1592-95) with his four sons Iganokami KINMICHI 伊賀守金道, Rai KINMICHI 来金道, Tanbanokami YOSHIMICHI 丹波守吉道 and Echunokami MASATOSHI 越中守正俊.

An original (Edo period) Gold leaf Chaff Makie lacquer work scabbard Koshirae consists of :
(click HERE for higher resolution images for each metal fitting and HERE for Tuka-Mae hilt)
  • Fuchi/kashira : Ivy/arabesque design Shakudo Stone surface Gold Iroe unsigned
  • Menuki : Crescent moon/Swan design Silver ground Yobori Copper Iroe
  • Tsuba : Suaka polish surface Shakudo Spiral design Mimi edge unsigned
  • Kozuka : Nihiki-Shishi, a pair of Leo design Shakudo Nanako-ji Takabori carving unsigned
  • Kogai : Ichihiki ruler design Shakudo Nanako-ji Takabori carving unsigned
Gold foiled double layer habaki, preserved in a Shirasaya plain wood mounting
Recent top quality polish/Condition scale: excellent (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor).
reference data:
Suzuki Takuo/Sugiura Yoshiyuki Muromachi-ki Mino Toko-no Kenkyu Ribun Shuppan 2006