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Motoshige (NBTHK Tokubetsu-Hozon)

japanese sword gallery germany

a very rare sunnobi-tanto by Motoshige (NBTHK Tokubetsu-Hozon)

Sunnobi Tanto in shira-saya (NBTHK Tokubetsu Hozon)

Signature: Bishu Osafune Motoshige, dated: 1362

Offered is a very rare signed and dated example by Bizen Motoshige. The dagger has the full signature "Bishu Osafune Motoshige" and also the date signature "koan 2nen 3gatsuhi (February, 1362)." The blade length is 32.6 cm with a slight sori of 0.3 cm. The nakago has three double holes, one of which is half closed. The nakago is ubu. Typical for the Nanbokucho period is the thin kasane of 0.50 cm. The blade has bohi with soebi on both sides. The jitetsu is worked in itame with a lot of jinie and chikei. The hamon is a gunome midare with a strong nioiguchi in ko-nie with many ashi.

The blade is somewhat rough and loosely forged in places.

It is also said that one can see into the steel -.

The piece is marked with a very rare ura-mei signature.

General explanation:

Motoshige was a bizen osafune smith active from the latter Kamakura - to the Nonbokucho period Kenmu (1334-1338). He enjoyed a long life and according to tradition was the son of Osafune Morishige and the elder brother of Shigezane. Because of the sharpness and quality of his blades, he is classified as saijo-o-wazamono (very sharp). As for his style, most of his tachi are in the Soden-Bizen style, with suguha and many ashi, or in gunome-choji. He is one of Sadamune's three students,

Although he worked in Bizen, his work later had a great influence on the Seki smiths. The Soen Bizen style was very fashionable at the time. These blades show a jigane with hataraki as well as a very active hamon with kinsuji and sunagashi similar to the Soshu tradition....

This tanto has a date signature on the back of the tang, making it an important reference piece.

In the city of Seki, Motoshige is revered by many of today's swordsmiths as the "founding father" of their forging art. According to tradition, Motoshige came to the country's centre of blank weapons and blades about 700 years ago, in the Kamakura period.







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