STUDY SUBJECTS and GUIDES
Shibui Swords Primer of Japanese Art History
NIHON-TO STUDY MATERIAL
Presented by Shibui Swords, is the most authorative treatise on sword judgement "The Complete Manual of the Old Sword" by an unknown author, published in 1793 in Edo. This manual was first translated by Ethel Watts Mumford in her book titled "The Japanese Book of the Ancient Sword".
Presenting Ancient Study of Nihon-To by Shibui Swords
The Beauty of the Japanese Sword by Michihiro Tanobe
ARMs and ARMOR of Ancient Japan
TOSOGU STUDY MATERIAL
Robert Haynes Study Guide
SUKASHI TSUBA in Late Muromachi and Momoyama Kyoto and Owari
ONE WAY OF LOOKING AT KANEIYE by Takeuchi Fumio
Namban Gallery of Fine Tsuba
If you are un-familiar with the
'HISTORY' of Tsuba, please view Tsuba
Description of Tsubako, Ha's, and Provinces of tsuba manufacture.
If you have an interest in GENJI-MON Tsuba, please enjoy this ESSAY
The History of UKIYO-E
CERAMICS & POTTERY TOPICS
Lacquer Ware, definitions and schools.
Japanese Art Definitions
The Origin of Raku Ware
Sandai Soshu Tsunahiro teacher of Hiromasa.
The Shakuhachi - Origin, History and Views
I wish to share my thoughts and concerns about "authenticity". Because Nihon-to is a collectible work of art, well-preserved antique blades by reputable smiths are extremely valuable. With an increased number of enthusiasts, the two most serious concerns of novice collectors of antique Nihon-to blades are a)the authenticity of the blade made by a reputable smith that they are interested in purchasing; and b)affordablility of the blade they 'can't live without'. The concern of affordability must be dealt with by the individual collector at a different level.
The concern of the authenticity of the given antique blade can be reduced or minimized if the collector is purchasing from a reputable art dealer. And, if the antique Nihon-to is accompanied with a legitimate certificate of authenticity by an established organization such as NBTHK or NTHK.
I am neither an 'appraiser' nor a 'connoisseur' qualified to determine the authenticity of any potentially valuable antique Nihon-to. As a novice Nihon-to collector, I have learned a basic outline of how the screening process is normally performed. This process of determining authenticity involves careful examinations of attributes in several different areas. The following four areas are what I use to determine attributes.
1) Structural attributes peculiar to a smith's work: sugata (shape of the blade), nakago (tang shape), forging/construction method, and hada (surface texture).
2) Attributes peculiar to the smith's work: hamon, nie/nioi, and hataraki.
3) Smith's personal attributes (mei): mei itself as an authenticating signature, and how the mei is 'usually' written (how the mei is carved with a chisel).
4) Chronological attributes based on the time frame the smith is known to have been working: inclusions with the mei (art names, titles, residence, etc.) and the color/patina on the nakago.
CALENDAR Dates from Juei (1182-1184) to Heisei (1989)
Maps of Japan during early history.
Stein's JAPANESE SWORD GUIDE
The most comprehensive Japanese Sword resource online.
ART of the JAPANESE SWORD
by Jim Gilbert, expert on Tsuba.
Robert Cole has the best material on the
Danny Massey's NIHONTOCRAFT
A website dedicated to the study and preservation of the Japanese sword.
Boris Markhasin has written numerous articles about Tosogu which are very educational. Many are referenced on this web site.
Afu is dedicated to translating Nihon-to books from Japanese to English. He has complete English volumes of the Nihon to Koza.
ISSOAN TEA SCHOOL
Marjorie Yap Sensei instructs the Urasenke Tradition of Tea.
This is an 'EXCELLANT' web site to learn everything about Samurai. History at its best.
If you seek information and knowledge about Buddhism, visit this wonderful web site.
Robert Yelin's comprehensive ceramics online resource.
Japanese Architecture and Art Net Users System.
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