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Help with different Gunto Signature

Article about: I have just acquired a slightly unusual sword that had been mounted with a leather combat cover.The cover has gone to time and the individual stripped off most of the remnants leaving the su

  1. #11


    The spacing of what remains of the mei appears to be identical.


  2. #12


    I'm not sure it's the same signature. The first four defaced kanji appear to be the same and done by the same artisan. The red box shows where the comparison fails based solely on the partial kanji that we can observe. The nakago on the left has a vertical bar whereas the nakago on the right is open.

    Verrrrrry currrrious, indeed.


    P.S. I'm pretty sure the first FOUR kanji -- and the final one -- are
    Noshū Seki jū....saku
    Made by ....... resident of Seki, Noshū [modern day Gifu Prefecture]
    I've seen that "loop-de-loop" on the before, but I sure can't find an image now!

    EDIT 2 -- Okay, nobody has ever called me smart .... that third kanji is most likely Seki.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Help with different Gunto Signature  
    Last edited by ghp95134; 12-02-2015 at 08:21 PM. Reason: Figured out kanji #3 should be 関 Seki

  3. #13


    Thank you Guy I was hoping to get your take on this!

  4. #14


    Quote by Geoff Ward View Post
    Thank you Guy I was hoping to get your take on this!
    I just noticed (I *think*) that the third kanji is likely to be 関 Seki; I've edited post #12.


  5. #15


    I thought mine was the only one like it, till i saw this thread.
    Thanks Guy, nice work as usual with your detective work!
    Geoff, mine came in Civilian mounts, very delapidated wooden scabbard, and only half a sword!, the tip half was broken off and unfortunately seperated from the rest of the sword.
    The civilian mounts were the typical ww2 period issue, the brass tsuba with flowers on it. When i find the pictures, i will add them for you to see.

    One thing is for certain, the signature was added to the blade prior to the groove being rolled onto the blade, i've only seen this type of groove which extends the full length of the tang on older (koto) swords, nearly every other one i have seen finish just under the habiki or a little past it, some even before the habiki on the blade itself (visible part).

    I thought that the bohi groove is added to the blade prior to the final quenching and tempering, and not after, so that would mean (if thats the case) that no salesman could sell a sword with extras such as the groove, only extras as far as fittings go?

    Also it appears that perhaps several smiths working in an arsenal forge, would hasitly write their names on their pieces for easy identification in the workshop and mabye an apprentice/smith made a mistake by overshooting the end point on the bohi application in these two cases prior to the final quenching & polishing???
    I would like to hear Bob's thoughts on this, i could be wrong, but am willing to learn more about the process.

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