Ryujin Swords

Tachi signed Unshu ju Kobayashi Sadanori, with NBTHK Hozon fittings

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Period: Showa.

Mei: Unshu ju Kobayashi Sadanori saku, on omote in tachi mei. Dated on the reverse "an auspicious day, Showa 49 (February 1974)".

Sugata: Shinogi-zukuri, tori-zori, iori-mune.

Overall length: 35.67 inches (906.00 mm).

Nagasa: 27.80 inches (706.00 mm) long.

Nakago: Ubu, 7.87 inches (200.00 mm), one mekugi-ana. The yasurime are katte-sagari, and the nakago-jiri is ha-agari kurijiri.

Kissaki: Chu-kissaki, 1.49 inches (37.85 mm). The boshi is so ko-maru that it is very nearly yakizume.

Moto-haba: 1.33 inches (33.59 mm). Moto-gasane: 0.29 inches (7.31 mm). Saki-haba: 0.84 inches (21.28 mm). Saki-gasane: 0.25 inches (6.35 mm).

Sori: 0.77 inches (19.61 mm).

Hamon: Nie-deki gunome midare.

Hada: Ko-itame with ji-nie.

Blade condition:

In very recent good polish. No flaws, ware, hagirae or bends.


The koshirae are Higo style, with both kozuka and kogai, and held together with a tsunagi. The Shoami school tsuba has an NBTHK Hozon paper (see bottom). The Kyo-Kanagushi menuki also have an NBTHK Hozon paper (see bottom).


Sadanori is one of the most important swordsmiths alive. He was born Sadatoshi Kobayashi on 11 November 1941. He apprenticed under his father Sadayoshi who was in turn a student of Sadaichi Gassan. Sadanori was approved as an authorised swordsmith by the Agency of Cultural Affairs in 1970. Since then he has won the Doryoku sho prize three times at Shinsakuto exhibitions and the Nyusen prize at least 14 times, the last that I am aware of being in 2005. He became a Living Cultural Treasure of Shimane Prefecture on 9 April 1999 and currently serves as an executive officer of the All Japan Swordsmith Association (Nippon Tosho Kai).

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