Tanto signed KANEHARU with)Black lacquered Kairagi Ray-skin polish surface scabbard Chisa-katana style Koshirae

Koto latter half of Muromachi period (Eisho era/circa1504-) Mino
Length of cutting edge 25.0cm a bit on inward curvature Width of base 25.9mm Thickness of base 5.8mm

NBTHK(Tokubetsu Hozon) certificate

with)Black lacquered Kairagi Ray-skin polish surface scabbard Chisa-katana style Koshirae

NBTHK(Hozon) certificate for Koshirae

Blade construction (kengyo) : Tanto of Hira-zuruki, Ior-mune. Short tang (nakago) in proportion to the blade length which was designed for one-hand grip. A bit on inward curvature for stabbing purpose. This dagger Tanto bears in the typical style of the Warning Stares medieval period. (click HERE for high resolution of the blade photograph)
Forging pattern (kitae hada) : Kitae hada is conspicuous Itame hada that shows streaming marks mainly along both cutting edge and back ridge. The entire Hiraji is moistened by fine Ji-nie hard metal granules over the surface and is active with whitish Utsuri reflection in ancient beauty .
Tempering pattern (hamon) : Hamon is fine Nie base, Suguha with an indication of undulating small Gunome. Upper ther blade, stronger, deeper and brighter the Nie granules where double of Niju-ha or fray of Hoture activities are perceived. Sunagashi blushing streams appears in the interior of quenching line.
Temper of tip (boshi) : Boshi tip in front forms medium circle whereas the other URA side creates small circle that turns back deeply.
Tang (Nakago) : Nakago is UBU original. Kiri (horizontal) filemarks. Ha-agari Kurijiri round heel shape. Two Mekugi-ana peg holes. The signature is chiselled two character KANE HARU 兼春 in Metesashi-style which was equipped on the right Obi sash.

The first generation sword smith KANEHARU, reported from Nihonto Meikan is to say "belonged to San-ami school in Mino, real name is Shiroubei, a son of KANEYUKI, Chōroku era (1457-79), date of year 3rd year Choroku (1459), 4th year of Bunmei (1472)" and later generations had been active with the record of works such as Eisho era, Tenbun and Tensho, total seven generations up to Keicho (1596) Shinto period.
Kousei Kotou Meikan, 1830 introduces two examples - the work of 2nd year of Choroku (1458) and one with 3rd year of Kouji (1557).
There are only few extant works of KANEHARU with the date of year still extant such as this Tachi -
文正二年(1467)、天文二十一(1552)、同二十三年紀(1554)、永禄三(1560)、同六年紀(1563) and 慶長元年紀(1596).
The subject majestic Tanto is judged as one of KANEHARU 兼春 during Eisho era (1504-) from it's classical character of the inscription and it's KIRI filemarks of Yasurime. It is full of Samurai majesty spirit during the Warning States of period when major powerful clans began rise to power.
Hardening crystallized Nie granules sparkle vividly bright in the light and the blueish steel gives off whitish mist reflection of Ji-Nie that hangs over the Hiraji - full of classical grace. It is judged Tokubetsu Hozon class as one of the representative KANEHARU 兼春 of San-ami school from early 16th C.
A bit on inward curve so called "Bamboo-Shoot shape" is designed for stabbing purpose, Ō-Itame with Mokume forging ware of functional mixture with hard and soft steel is regarded for durable construction.

The attached Black lacquered Kairagi Ray-skin polish surface scabbard Chisa-katana style Koshirae
(NBTHK Hozon certificate) consists of:
(click HERE for entire Koshirae in front / HERE for the other side / click HERE for each fitting)
  • Fuchi/Kashira : ARIWARA no Narihira 在原業平 motif, Oborogin (silver and copper, gold alloy) ground polish surface, unsigned
  • Menuki : Botan flower, Shishi lion design, solod gold ground, Katabori carving
  • Kozuka : Waves and Dragon design, Shakudo nanako-ji surface, Takabori carving, Gold Iroe, Gold back rim, unsigned
  • Tsuba : Hamidashi style oval shape, Wave and Dragon design, Shakudo ground, Sukidashi carving, Gold Iroe, unsigned
Gold foiled single layer Habaki collar, preserved in a Shira Saya plian wood mounting.
reference data :
SUZUKI Takuo, SUGIURA Yoshiyuki, Muromachi-ki Mino Toko-no-kenkyu, Ribun Shuppan, 2006
ISHII Masakuni, HON'MA Kunzan, Nihonto Meikan, Yuzankaku, 1975