Tachi signed IESUKE with) Black Roiro lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae

Koto Early Muromachi period (Ouei era/circa 1394-27) Bizen
Length of cutting edge 70.2cm Curvature 2.5cm Width of base 28.0mm Width of Yokote 18.2mm Thickness of base 7.5mm

NBTHK(Tokubetsu Hozon) certificate

with) Black Roiro lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae


Blade construction: The typical Tachi of Shinogi-zukuri, Iori-mune, Thick in Kasane and deep in curvature that stands firmly on base.Well proportioned degree of tapering from base to medium Kissaki, created in a archaic Tachi-style that has a highly defined curve near the base while the rest upper area is nearly straight. KIRIKOMI strikes on the back ridge Mune tells us brilliant achivements in battle. (click HERE for higher resolution image of the entire blade)
Forging(Hada): Forging is fine Itame in general, mixing with Mokume burl grain indication. The entire forging scene on Hiraji appears reflection under light like the Milky Way sparkling effect of Sugu-Utsuri.
Carving(Horimono) : Round-end Bo-hi grooves on both sides.
Temper(Hamon): Hamon, a bit on stronger side Nie based, forms a combination of undulating small Gunome and Clove outline of Choji-ha with some indication of Togari-ha where some of isolated quenching splits over Hiraji "Tobiyaki".The interior of temper is active with abundant streaming Sunagashi lines and Ashi feet that spread onto the cutting edge.
Temper of tip(Boshi): Quench of Boshi is irregularly Midarekomi with an indication of Hakikake then small circle turns back.
Tang(Nakago): Nakago has defined curve and was Suriage shortened on about two-sun (6cm). Two peg holes of Mekugiana. Katte-sagari (shallow slanting leftward) filemarks. Horizontal KIRI heel shape. Two small character of signature IESUKE 家助 is clearly chiselled in Tachi style at lower the Shinogi-ji next to the original Mekugi-ana.

Among the sword maker smiths so called Ouei-Bizen in Osafune, both Morimitsu 盛光 and Yasumitsu 康光 had played major roles during Ouei era early 15th century in Bizen province (now Okayama pref.). The other smiths such as Moromitsu 師光, Tsuneie 経家, Iesuke 家助 played also in the mainstream of Ouei-Bizen movement that was mostly in the revival mood of Kamakura from 13th century period.
Founder IESUKE 家助 in Bun'ei period (1264-74) reportedly was a son of Hatakeda MORIIE 畠田守家. However practical extant works with the date of year starts from the earliest Ouei 3(1396).
IESUKE 家助 or the other makers in Osafune had become to produce not only Tachi but also Katana to meet with demand from Samurais who had transformed their battle style from horseback to walking battle in Ouei, early Muromachi period.

The subject Tachi signed IESUKE 家助 shows a typical characteristics of Ouei-Bizen - created in an archaic Tachi and has a defined reflection like the Milky Way emits from steel. Spacious tempering pattern of undulating Notare with combination of Gunome and clove out line Choji-midare features major peculiarity of IESUKE.

with) Black Roiro lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae (click
HERE for entire Koshirae and HERE for each fitting)
  • Fuchi/Kashira : Ichi-hiki Dragon design, Shakudo Nanako-ji, Takabori, signed Yabu TSUNEYUKI (seal) 薮 常之(花押)
  • Tsuba : Shiho-SENSU folding fans design, Iron ground, Openwork, Gold Inlay, unsigned Kyo-shoami work
  • Menuki : Triple shells design, Shakudo ground, Katabori carving, Gold Ioe
  • Tsuka : White layskin, Dark blue silk cord Moro-Tsumami-maki lozenge wrap
Gold foiled double layers Habaki collar, preserved in a Shira-saya plain wood mounting
Recent polish/Condition scale: excellent-very good (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor)

reference data : Osafune-cho, Osafune-cho-shi, Osafune-town, 1998