ABOUT THIS BLOG

I want to welcome  everyone who found the way here. The idea for this blog was born from my everyday work as translator when often interesting finds suggest themselves to be shared with other interested parties. As I am mostly working with texts on swords, sword fittings and armor, the vast majority of this blog will be about these subjects but I reserve the right to post from time to time other things which might be of interest (or are at least for me). Since English is not my mother tongue, I politely ask the reader or commentator for forbearance. However, I am always open to suggestions and corrections if certain passages are ambiguous or completely incomprehensible.

Thank you for visiting and I wish you a pleasant reading!

Markus Sesko

13 thoughts on “ABOUT THIS BLOG

  1. Hi Markus I found my way to your blog because I have recently bought a silver bowl on stand by Unno Shomin and was trying to find some information about him . Do you have anymore information about this master craftsman . Please email me any information you may have . thanks again regards Justin Gill

    • Hi Markus I now have bought your book on The Japanese Tosso-Kinko School and it is a great reference book and it is a pleasure to see that you have taken the time to write and translate the work into English etc so we can all learn more about these artists . rgds Justin

  2. Hello Markus,
    I recently found your blog, and I’ve immensely enjoyed reading your posts.
    I needed some on-the-go reference material so I also bought some of your ebooks over at lulu. “The e-legends-and-stories-around-the-japanese-sword” is also an interesting read.

    Thank you, and keep up the good work.

  3. Hi Markus,
    In your book “Legends and Stories Around the Japanese Swords” you talk about Hasebe Kunishige sword with fake signature that has been missing since WWII. Is there a way to get more information on that sword? Pictures? Descriptions?
    Thank you!

    • Hi Iwona,
      Unfortunately not. Also Nakamura Tatsuo says in his extensive article on the Tenkyuwari-Kunimune (published in Token-Bijutsu 446, March 1994) that the whereabouts of the Hasebe Kunishige blade in question are unclear since WWII. Probably it was confiscated by the GHQ but if it ever pops up in the US or somewhere else, we have the oshigata shown in my book to proof its authenticity.

  4. Hi Markus –
    Have read and recommended many of your articles on the internet to my friends; i assume lulu is the site to purchase your kantei books, etc? As a question, would a typical mune ever be changed to marumune to deal with combat damage?
    I have a tachi mei wakizashi that was shortened to a 56.8cm from about 62cm. Has a full tempered but extremely shallow marumune (only about 1/10th cm high). It has driven me insane for a decade trying to place it.

    • Hi John,
      To my knowledge, the mune was not changed to deal with combat damage as there are swords extant with conspicuous cuts along the back. These cuts are also referred to as “homare-kizu,” lit. “honorable damage” and are usually left as they are because of that very context (i.e. a sword having survived a combat and probably saved a former owner’s life).
      What era do you think is your wakizashi from? If it is that short, kotô, and signed tachi-mei, it was most likely a kodachi. But if it is shintô and tachi-mei, a Hizen-tô comes to mind. You can send me pics to “markus.sesko@gmail.com” and I will see what I can tell you about the sword.

  5. Hello Markus,
    I have examined Kunishige Hasebe and I found your blog.
    I had fun reading that blog.
    This blog is very interesting and I learned a lot from that.
    I want to know more in detail about Kunishige Hasebe.
    Do you have a book written about the Kunishige Hasebe in Your books?I do want it.
    And please tell me if there is a Japanese book written about Hasebe or sousyu-den(相州伝).(I am a Japanese speaker)
    Please pardon my poor English.
    Thank you for the nice article.

    • Unfortunately, I haven’t written anything yet on solely Kunishige or the Hasebe School. But four Hasebe blades (1 Kunishige and 3 Kuninobu) are featured as oshigata in my Koto Kantei Zenshû. I am not aware of a Japanese book that deals solely with the Hasebe School but as for the Soshu-den, I can recommend the following books:

      「正宗とその一門」, 本間順治・佐藤貫一

      「日本の美術 No 142 正宗・相州伝の流れ」、本間順治

      「正宗 日本刀の天才とその系譜」、佐野美術館

      • Thank you for your kind reply.
        I try to read Koto-kantei.
        and I want to read that Japanese books.
        I’ll try looking for it.

  6. I have a sword and I’m not sure if it’s real, what it is, and if I should have it certified. Can i send you some pic and get your input?

    • Dear Kai, you can send me some pictures to “markus.sesko@gmail.com” and I will take a look at the sword. Please note that I am travelling at the moment so I might not be able to reply so quickly.

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