Kasuga-taisha sword findings polished

Wataru Hara-san just shared this Yomiuri Online article (link here) on FB and I thought I have to process this for my readers. In 1939, nine swords were discovered under the ceiling of the Kasuga-taisha treasure house during repair measures. Three of them were mounted as plain period kokushitsu no tachi (黒漆太刀). I don’t have any pictures of these swords but their koshirae probably looks something like shown below.

kokushitsutachi

 

Now the blades were all rusted, of course, but in course of last year’s shikinen-zôtai (式年造替), the rebuilding of the sanctuary that only takes place every 20 years, it was decided to have three of them polished, I guess the three most promising ones. The shikinen-zôtai was finished in November this year by the way. So the three blades were given to ningen-kokuhô polisher Hon’ami Kôshû (本阿弥光洲) and they obviously turned out great as the Yomiuri Online article is speaking of “kokuhô and jûyô-bunkazai level swords.” Two of the sword are mumei but attributed to Ko-Bizen and one is signed Kuniyoshi (国吉). It is a work of Enju Kuniyoshi. Not sure if there are more pics behind the Yomiuri Online premium paywall so I also have just the one seen in the link but as Hara-san pointed out on FB, the prominent ha-machi suggests that this blade is in an extraordinarily healthy condition! It measures impressive 106.8 cm in total. Will let you know if I read more about this blades in the future.

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One thought on “Kasuga-taisha sword findings polished

  1. Now this just sounds too amazing to be true! Hidden swords in the roof, just makes the mind wonder.

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