Katana signed KANENOBE Sawai Cho'shin [Ready for war even in times of peace, Forewarned is forearmed] with) Gold-brocade Gentian-Mum-Dragons design scabbard Tachi style Koshirae

Koto Middle of Muromachi period (Meio era/circa 1491-) Owari
Length of cutting edge 64.8cm Curvature 1.6cm Width of base 29.8mm Width of Yokote 19.8mm Thickness of base6.7mm

NBTHK(Tokubetsu Hozon) certificate

with) Gold-brocade Gentian-Mum-Dragons design scabbard Tachi style Koshirae

Blade construction: Shinogi-zukuri, Iori-mune with a bit on larger side Chu-Kissaki, moderate in Mihaba and a bit on higher side of Shinogi-suji of which volume of Shinogi-ji is shaved off toward the back ridge of Mune for sturdy construction. There is moderate degree of tapering from base to point holding a bit on deeper side waist point curve designed for fast drawing purpose. These are the major trends in the Muromachi period. (click HERE for higher resolution image of the entire blade).
Forging(Hada): Forging is conspicuous Mokume-hada with of Masame hada ware mostly appear along quenching boundary lines as well as Shinogi-ji. Crystallized granule of Ji-nie appears on surface that emits sparkling reflection of whitish-Utsuri. Darkish thick lines of Nie so called "CHIKEI" activity appears on Hira-ji.
Temper(Hamon): Hamon is uniform "Nie" hard steel crystallized Chu-Suguha. Sparkling fine Nie accumulated deeply on boundary line. Upper the Monouchi area there perceives clear activities of thick Nie so called Uchinoke and Kin-suji or Inazuma - curved lines run along hardening boundary area.
Temper of tip(Boshi): Temper of boshi forms slight undulating irregular indication and small circle turns back.
Tang(Nakago): The tang is slightly Suriage shortened with Sujikai (slanting left) filemarks. Horizontal "Kiri" heel shape. Three mekugi-ana peg holes. The inscription signature in front is 2 peculiar character KANENOBE 兼延 and the other side is chiselled the name of carrier in Edo period Sawai Cho'shin 澤井長慎 and a new paragraph the precepts from ancient Chinese divination "
I Ching" says "Ready for war even in times of peace Forewarned is forearmed 安而不忘危存而不忘亡"

Here is a splendidly heroic katana of KANENOBE 兼延 in Owari from late 15th C. from Muromachi period.
According to an ancient record, KANENOBE 兼延 initially lived in
Oyama town in Mino domain then had moved to Shiga-town, Owari during Meio era (1492-) . It is generally known that he is the founder who laid the foundation of Owari swords and being giving a name "Shiga-Seki".
Generically called Naoe-shizu school such as Kanetomo 兼友、Kanetoshi 兼俊、Kanenobe 兼延, had established a foothold in Naoe town and flourished to meet with sharp rise in demand for the Nanbokucho period while the two courts fought for fifty years.
In the prime of Nanbokucho period, Naoe-shizu makers accomplished their own workmanship in the style of Soushu so that Soushu and Yamato techniques were integrated into Mino technique.
Just after the Muromachi era had started, there became little demand for making swords under brief peace also suffered repeated floods, sword makers who belonged to Naoe-Shizu school were scattered in other areas such as Akasaka, Seki or Oyama in Mino domain.
This powerful katana, although it is slightly shortened, almost remains the original majestic shape. It is full of Samurai spirit during the Warning States of period when major powerful clans began rise to power. It feels solidly heavy in hand holding rich volume in Kasane and powerful medium Kissaki. Hardening crystallized Nie granules sparkle vividly bright in the light and fine steel gives off whitish mist reflection of Utsuri that hangs over the Hiraji. It is judged Tokubetsu Hozon class as 1st generation KANENOBE 兼延 of Shiga-Seki school from late 15th C.
Deep in curve was designed for fast draw, Mokume forging ware of functional mixture with hard and soft steel was designed for durable construction, dimmed Suguha tempering was carefully quenched for the most supreme sharp performance and "Muneyaki" was designed for defending against hard hitting.
This prominent katana has been treasured by powerful legitimate Samurai Sawai Cho'shin 澤井長慎 who left important precepts that should serve as a warning to all and has been treasured in generations.
The blade is admired for the excellent quality and supreme condition over the passage of 500 years or more.

with) Gold-brocade Gentian-Mum-Dragons design scabbard Tachi style Koshirae
HERE for entire Koshirae/HERE for each fitting) / (note) some gold-brocade peel off
  • Iron ground metal fittings of Kabuto-kane,Fuchi,Kuchi-kane,Ashi-kanamono, Kashiwa-ba and Ishizuk i -Vine grape design, Sukisage-carving, Gold inlay rim Koberi, unsigned
  • Tsuba : Ivy arabesque design Aoi shape, iron ground Sukisage-carving, Gold inlay, unsigned
  • Menuki : Hexagonal Mitsu-hiki family crest design, Shakudo ground, Yobori-carving, Nanako-ji surface
  • Tsuka : Gold lacquered layskin, Black silk cord logenze wrap
Gold foiled double layers habaki collar, preserved in a Shira-saya plain wood mounting
Old good polish/Condition scale: mint - excellent (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor)
reference data :
Honma Kunzan/Ishii Masakuni, Nihontomeikan, Yuzanaku, 1975
Honma Kunzan/Sato Kan'ichi, Nihonto-Taikan/Koto 3, Otsuka-Kogeisha, 1969
Suzuki Taskuo/Sugiura Yoshiyuki, Muromachi-ki Mino-Toko-no kenkyu, Ribun-shuppan, 2006