Ryujin Swords

Wakizashi by Shinto Jumyo Den; NBTHK Hozon for both blade and koshirae



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Blade:

Period: Shinto (1596-1781). Probably 17th century.

Mei: Mumei. Attributed to the Shinto Jumyo by the NBTHK. The blade has very recent Hozon origami.

Sugata: Unokubi-zukuri based on hira-zukuri, shallow tori-zori, iori-mune. Shinogi-hi on one omote and futasuji on ura.

Overall length: 17.83 inches (453.00 mm)

Nagasa: 12.99 inches (330.00 mm) long.

Nakago: Ubu, 4.84 inches (123.00 mm), one mekugi-ana, sujikai yasurime, ha agari kurijiri tending to kurijiri. Small forging flaw on nakago

Moto-haba: 1.03 inches (26.10 mm). Moto-gasane: 0.26 inches (6.70 mm).

Sori: 0.13 inches (3.30 mm mm)

Hamon: Irregular peaked gunome with some sunagashi.

Hada: Itame with some mokume.

Blade condition: In good polish. No fatal flaws and no cracks, a couple of small, thin kitae-ware, and some minor scratches on the kissaki that can only really be seen in a x10 macro photograph.

Mounts:

The mounts have Hozon origami. Koshi-kazami saya, tsuka wrapped with jabara-ito, and black patinated copper habaki. Edo period mumei tsuba of concert under a tree. Stunning dragonfly fuchi-kashira in iron and gold, and tree peony menuki. The kozuka is decorated with parent and child lions.

Comments:

On commission. A very nice wakizashi in excellent mounts with a blade from a highly regarded school in very good condition. There were many Jumyo smiths, so it is difficult to be sure which smith made a particular sword.

The Jumyo school existed from the very earliest days of the Mino Den. They were located in the county of Saigun, particularly in Shimizu village. It seems that the Shodai, (signed Jumyo and Noshu Onogun Sai-gun Junin Jumyo) came from Yamato in approximately 1302 and was one of the forerunners of the Mino tradition. The migration of many smiths from Yamato during this period may explain the amalgamation of the Yamato and Soshu traditions. In addition, there is some kind of relationship between the Jumyo school and the Toshinaga school of Kawado village, where some smiths within the latter group used Jumyo as a family name. The kanji for 'Jumyo' can also be read as Toshinaga.

The Jumyo school flourished from the Koto period to the early 18th century. The main line separated in the 17th century into the Ishikiri and Kondo lineages. In addition, there were also the Owari-Jumyo. This line resulted from a migration of Mino smiths to Owari following Ieyasu Tokugawa’s defeat of the Imagawa clan. The Shodai of the Owari-Jumyo, Tango no kami Fujiwara Jumyo, was also the first in the Ishikiri lineage. The Owari-Jumyo lasted five generations (1579-1804).

Jumyo literally means "long life" and Jumyo swords were considered auspicious. It was believed that those who possessed a Jumyo blade were blessed with good fortune and longevity. Jumyo swords had a deserved reputation as wazamono blades with very good cutting ability. Interestingly, a superstition arose that a cut from a Jumyo sword would never heal. Presumably this was a comment on both the cutting ability of this school's swords and their percieved auspicious nature.

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