T151168(W2778) Sun'nobi-style Tanto signed Bishu Osafune TSUGUMITSU
In the 8th month, Shouchō 2nd
NBTHK (Tokubetsu Hozon)
Koto early Muromachi period (Shouchō 2/1429) Bizen
Length of cutting edge 34.2cm No Curvature Width of base 25.1mm Thickness of base 5.5mm
Blade construction: Hira- zukuriSun-nobi-style Tanto, Iori-mune in low and less swelling in Fukura area. Nagasa is moderately longer than usual in proportion to the Mihaba and almost no curvature which is assumed that this geometry so called Ouei-Bizen in early Muromachi due to new preferences in swordsmanship as supplement usage for a long Tachi.(click HERE for higher resolution image of the entire blade)
Forging(Hada): Forging is fine Mokume burl mixing with Itame-hada. The surface shows moistened beauty of jet-black luster of Chikei along Mokume and Itame-hada against fine sparkling mottled Utsuri reflection in full of an archaic beauty with a sense of antique and elegant.
Temper(Hamon): Hamon forms with uniform Ko-Nie hard metal granules base, Suguaha with slight undulating indication of Notare with slight sign of slanted feet and knots of Fushi. Boundary line glows softly with brilliant fine Ko-Nie and the interior is filled with dense mist of Nioi.
Temper of tip(Boshi): Temper of Boshi is sharpened-up in Togari then turns back shortly in good manner.
Tang(Nakago): Nakago is in UBU original that is shorter side in proportion to the length of cutting edge. Kurijiri (double-bevelled) heel shape. One peg hole.Katte-sagari (slanting left) filemarks. Back ridge of Nakago is flat with Katte-sagari mark. The signature in Omote starts with place of work Bishu-Osafune 備州長船 then smith name TSUGUMITSU 次光. The other side is inscribed with the date of year In the 8th month, Shouchō 2nd (1429) 正長二年八月日.

The founder of TSUGUMITSU 次光 in Osafune appeared on after second half of Ouei era starting from 1415 down to Shouchō 2nd (1429). TSUGUMITSU 次光 reportedly is a son of SHIGEHISA 重久, grand son of HIDEMITSU 秀光. The subject YUKIHISA 行久 belongs to Ouei Bizen.
An Ouei Bizen 應永備前 is the alias that many of the swordsmith in Bizen Osafune during Ouei era (1394-1427) marked the Imperial era name Ouei 應永 date of year.
After the Northern and Southern Dynasties 60 years disturbance period, Samurai dandysm lost in power and the restoration of ancient works came into fashion.
We observe that wide Mihaba of the previous period gradually disappears under peace and quiet of daily life in early Muromachi period.
Hira-zukuri style Tanto became longer than usual and hamon forms gentle, antique and elegant in accordance with reactionism at the time.

The subject classical tanto is the sublime work by the 1st generation TSUGUMITSU 次光 in Osafune. Nakago holds splendid taste of patina that remains impressively clear chisel of inscriptions with the date of year.
This prominent tanto is admired for the entire original shape and also an excellent quality of the legitimate Bizen Osafune technique nearly the passage of 600 years ago.
Double layers gold foiled Habaki collar, preserved in a Shira-saya plain wood mounting.
Fresh polish/Condition scale: excellent - very good (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor)
reference data : Honma Kunzan/Ishii Masakuni, Nihonto Meikan, Yuzankaku, 1975
 
寸延び短刀 銘 備州長船次光 正長二年八月日
寸延び短刀 銘 備州長船次光 正長二年八月日
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