Katana signed Suruga-no-kami Fujiwara MORIMICHI with) Black Ro-iro lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae

Shinto early Edo period (Kanbun era/1661-) Owari
Length of cutting edge 71.2cm Curvature 1.4cm Width of Base 31.0mm Width of Yokote 20.9mm Thickness of base 7.0mm

NBTHK(Tokubetsu Hozon) certificate

with) Black Ro-iro lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae

Blade construction : Shinogi-zukuri, Iori-mune, Harmonious ratio of wide Mihaba to the length of blade in 71.2cm long at Jōsun interpretation in swordmanship to hold well-harmonized tapering to the medium Chu-Kissaki. This configuration is referred as Kanmbun-shinto-sugata 寛文新刀姿. (click HERE for higher resolution of entire blade)
Forging (Hada) : Fine steel gives off darkish impression. Forging is conspicuous Itame grain mark in general, Mokume burl and some flowing Itame ware partially appears here and there. Surface is covered in reflecting Ji-nie glitter of hard metal granules over the surface where thick and darkish Nie lines of Chikei appears.
Temper line (Hamon) : Hamon is based on Ko-nie-deki which is a bit on stronger side hard metal granule Nie-based, starts with short slope of Yakidashi then round-head Gunome mixing with tassled head Choji-ha or box-shapeHako-ba with indication of isolated Tobiyaki that forms like lotus or chrysanthemum flowers here and there. Nie granules accumurates on the bottom of Gunome where is activated with thick lines of Ashi toward the cutting edge.
Temper of tip (Boshi) : Temper of the tip forms Gunome at Yokote, wide undulating Notare then medium circle in front whereas the reversed side forms small circles, then turns back deeply to Mune.
Tang (Nakago) : Nakago is a bit on shorter side to the length of cutting edge, UBU in original of a distinguishing trait of Fish belly (Tanago-bara) shape. Impressively deep at Hamachi at cutting edge and maintains excellent taste of patina. Ō-sujikai greatly slanting left file marks. The back ridge is flat. Single-bevelled (Ha-agari-Kurijiri) heel in full. One retaining hole of Mekugiana. The signature in front is a bit on smaller side, deeply chiselled, seven long character that starts with an official district title Suruga-no-kami 駿河守, the name of clan Fujiwara 藤原 and smith name MORIMIACHI 盛道.

The first generation MORIMICHI 盛道 with Suruga-no-kami 駿河守 title was born during early Eiroku era (ca.1558) in Gifu, Mino province as a son of smith MORIMICHI 盛道 who belonged to MUROYA 室屋 branch of Seki-Shichi-Nagare group 関七流.
He is reportedly a relative smith of Mutsu-no-kami DAIDO 陸奥守大道, initial name was KANEMICHI 兼道, who was the founder of Mishina school during Bunrokuk era (1592-95) with his four sons Iganokami KINMICHI 伊賀守金道, Rai KINMICHI 来金道, Tanbanokami YOSHIMICHI 丹波守吉道 and Echunokami MASATOSHI 越中守正俊.
MORIMICHI 盛道 reportedly went up to Kyoto in his early age then he moved from Gifu to Nagoya on after Nagoya castle relocation in Keicho 15 (1610).
Changing over from the Middle Ages of Muromachi to the Modern Times of Edo period while dramatic turning period of politics, economy, culture and ideology, style of Samurai fashion was innovatively changed, those sword smiths who were active in Mino province had played the major roles to meet with luxurious oriented demand from powerful Samurais.
Fish belly shape of Nakago was popular, frequently seen in Ise-Senko 伊勢千子、Owari MORIMICHI 尾張盛道, Suruga-Shimada 駿河島田、Soushu-Tsunahiro 相州綱広 and Bushu-Shitahara 武州下原 schools to understand that frequent cultural exchange had become very active along Tōkaido (region).

The subject Katana is identified as a work of the 2nd generation MORIMICHI 盛道 who was active during Kanbun era (1661-). The entire shape creates a majestic manner by powerful Owari Samurais. The elaborate made filemarks and powerful chisels of inscription in Nakago shows excellent taste of patina to remain an excellent condition over almost 360 yeas history. This katana has been treasured over decades of generations and presenting the typical workmanship of MORIMICHI 盛道 that comes with presumabley original Koshirae mount where Samegawa-skin is restored with newly made Tsuka-ito silkcord and the Katana is fresh polished then preserved in newly-made Shira-saya mount.

with) an old Black lacquered scabbard Uchikatana Koshirae consists of :
HERE for entire Koshirae and HERE for higher resolution image of each fitting)
  • Fuchi/Kashira : Shishi lion design, Shakudo copper alloy ground, Nanako-ji surface, Gold Iroe, unsigned.
  • Menuki : Triple Rinbo wheel treasure design, Shakudo copper apply Yobori carving, Gold Iroe.
  • Tsuba : Dewdrops on bamboo grass leaves openwork design, Iron ground, Round shape, Nikubori carving, Gold inlay, unsigned.
  • Tsuka : White layskin, black silk cord Tsumami-maki style lozenge warp.
Preserved in new Shirasaya plain wood mounting, Double layers silver foiled Habaki collar.
Fresh polish/Condition scale: excellent (using a scale of mint-excellent-very good-good-fair-poor)

reference data:
Iwata Atou [Owari Tokofu] Nagoya city Board of Education, 1985