H81380(S8886) Katana signed Tsuda Echizen-no-kami SUKEHIRO
The 8th month 9th year of Kanbun
with) Floating Butterflies from Sakura flower to flower motif Koshirae
NBTHK(Tokubetsu Hozon) 
Shinto Early Edo period (9th year of Kanbun/1669) Settsu
Length of cutting edge70.4cm Curvature1.2cm Width of base28.2mm Thickness of base6.5mm Width of Yokote19.1mm 
This is an excellent article katana of the most famed smith Tsuda Echizen-no-kami SUKEHIRO ÓczO珕L.
He was born in Kanei 14 (1637), Uchide town, Settsu domain, real name Jin'nosuke rV. He learned from the 1st gen. Soboro SUKEHIRO ڂ돕A to realize his ambition to be a swordsmith to obtain Echizen-no-kami zO title in Meireki 3 (1657).
He achieved success and won fame and in Kanbun 7 (1667), Aoyama Inabanokami Munetoshi ŽR@r (Karo top-ranking samurai officials) of Osaka castle employed him as a retainer with a 10 fuchi salary.
His general workmanship transformed from Choji-midare of smaller clove in his early years then roundish gunome or gentle wave Suguha and surging waves of Toran-ha in his later age.
He was a dominant smith in his time, has been highly prized as the most superior swordsmith to have a great impact on all swordsmiths in later ages. Died young in Ten'na 2 (1682), was 46 years old.
The subject katana was made when he was 33 years old. The blade shape of this katana shows typical advanced early Edo period from Shou'ou to Jyou'kyo (1652-87). The cutting edge measures around 70cm that tapers a bit strongly, shallow sori leading to a compact Chu-kissaki, due to preference in swordmanship for thrusts rather than cuts. This significant change appears in kanbun era (1661-73).
Jigane is extremely fine Itame-hada, covers with sparkling Nie of martensite crystals of the highest quality and precise darkish elements of Chikei appears all over the surface. Medium Suguha forms five undulating hamon pattern of gentle waves, exceedingly deeper in Nioi, really brighter the Nie where boundary line flashes glaring light.
In view of Nakago, there performed with unique, decorative and complex filemark so called "Kou'tsutsumi-yasuri". The inscription of mei is angular shaped kanji and the other side is chiselled the date of year in cursive style.

Floating Butterflies from Sakura flower to flower motif Koshirae consists of : (click HERE for entire koshirae/ HERE for each fitting)
  • Fuchi/kashira : Yoshino river (lit. Sakura flower stream) design, Shakudo copper alloy polish surface, gold inlay, unsigned
  • Menuki : Sakura big tree design, Shakudo ground, Yobori carving
  • Tsuba : Full of Sakura flowers design, Iron ground Mokkou shape, Nikubori, Kebnori carving, gold inlay, unsigned
  • Tsuka : White rayskin, golden brown Tsumami-maki style logenze wrapped
  • Scabbard : Kuro-ro lacquered, Kanagai L style Butterlies and Sakura design makie, Silver Kojiri end

Gold foiled double layer copper Habaki collar, Preserved in a Shira-Saya plain wood mounting (Sayagaki written by Dr. Michihiro Tanobe)
Recent polish/Condition scale: excellent (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor)
Katana signed Tsuda Echizen-no-kami SUKEHIRO
Katana signed Tsuda Echizen-no-kami SUKEHIRO