Katana - Kasama Shigetsugu with NBTHK Hozon


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Item #1052



This sword was made by Kasama Shigetsugu, one of the top gendaito smiths that worked during the 1900's. Kasama Ikkansai Shigetsugu was born on April 1, 1886 in Shizuoka. His real name was Kasama Yoshikazu. He studied sword making under his uncle, Miyaguchi Ikkansai Shigeyoshi until 1903 when he went to Tokyo and studied under Morioka Masayoshi. Shigetsugu was the master swordsmith at the Nihonto Tenran Denshusho. He later made swords at the forge on the estate of Toyama Mitsuru, a noted swordsman of his time and founder of the Black Dragon Society. In addition to being a master swordsmith, Shigetsugu was also a master at carving horimono. He worked primarily in the Bizen style of sword making. This blade is one of exceptional quality. The hamon consists of a choji midare. Kinsuji and sunagashi appears, with lots of ashi with yo. Jitetsu is a very well knit ko itame with ji nie. Chikei appears in the ji.

The Hosokawa family has long been an important and famous Daimyo family in Japan from the Kamakura period to present day Japan. During the Edo period, they were one of the largest landholding daimyo families in Japan. Over the years, they moved from Shikoku, to Kinai, and then to Kyushu, where they currently reside in the Kumamoto prefecture. The current head of the Hosokawa family is Morihiro Hosokawa, who was a former Prime Minister of Japan.
During the time when this sword was made (1937), the Hosokawa family was headed by Moritatsu Hosokawa (1883 - 1970), who was also the president of the NBTHK and an upper Parliment member. Also, in 1937, his son, Morisada Hosokawa (1912 - 2005) married the 2nd daughter of Fumimaro Konoe (whom became Prime Minister of Japan in 1937). In August of 1937, Morisada Hosokawa's wife was pregnant at the time with their first son, Morihiro. Morihiro Hosokawa was born in January 1938. This sword was possibly special ordered by Moritatsu pending the birth of his grandson and give to his son (Morisada) as a gift.

The blade is accompanied with a gold foiled habaki, high grade shirasaya and a NBTHK Hozon.

Time Period
August 1937

Signed - "笠間一貫齋繁繼謹作 (花押)" - Kasama Ikkansai Shigetsugu Kinsaku (Kao)

Dated - "昭和 十二年八月吉日" - Showa Ju Ni Nen Hachi Gatsu Kichi Jitsu - A Lucky day in August, 1937

Other inscriptions:
"細川家 所蔵" - Hosokawa-ke Shozou - Possession of the Hosokawa family
"南無妙法蓮華経" - Nam Myoho Renge Kyo - A Buddhist chant or prayer
"大黒天" - Daikokuten - One of the Seven Lucky Gods - god of wealth, commerce and trade.


Cutting edge Length - 26.4 inches (67 cm)
Width (motohaba) - 1.22 inches (3.11 cm)

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