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Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

Article about: I picked up this Tanto a few months ago. I'm just trying to find out some more information on it. If anyone has any information, it would be much appreciated! See pics below. Thanks for your

  1. #1
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    Default Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    I picked up this Tanto a few months ago. I'm just trying to find out some more information on it. If anyone has any information, it would be much appreciated! See pics below. Thanks for your time!
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    菊 一文字

    Kiku-Ichi-monji

    Don't know why the name is on the blade of a tanto; though, I've seen that done for kitchen knives. There is a cutlery shop in Kyoto called Kiku Ichimonji, but their blade writing is somewhat different:



    And here's another blade from a different company I found in Google Images


    Your blade "appears" older ... but hard to tell from just a photo. I'm just puzzled at your tanto with its inscription on the shinogi-ji portion of the blade, and not on the nakago (tang).

    Here's an older tanto with the 菊 一文字 signature on the nakago with the 菊 portion under the habaki area:

    source SwordForum 2009. More photos.

    --Guy

  3. #3

    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    Also, the style of your blade is the Kogarasu-Maru shape:



    --Guy

  4. #4

    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    The characters are not a smith signature. I do not think this is a traditional hand forged tempered blade. It is quite possible this has some connection to a cutlery shop as previously mentioned. Blades like this were made for use as shrine gifts.
    BOB

    LIFE'S LOSERS NEVER LEARN FROM THE ERROR OF THEIR WAYS.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    The ww2 vet I got it off of said he got it off of a Japanese office.why would he have it if its for a shrine gift?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    Quote by BBMATT View Post
    The ww2 vet I got it off of said he got it off of a Japanese office.why would he have it if its for a shrine gift?
    WHO KNOWS?! The man may have been carrying it as a commercial weapon. There is no evidence of any manner to carry it as part of a uniform. After nearly 68 years, at times the story has changed after retelling it over and over again. I am just relating to you what the main purpose of this form of tanto is. A friend of mine in Japan showed me over thirty of these type of tanto that had been given to their family shrine. They were of various hsapes and quality.
    BOB

    LIFE'S LOSERS NEVER LEARN FROM THE ERROR OF THEIR WAYS.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    So a Tanto like this was given to the family shire to honor the dead?

  8. #8

    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    Quote by BBMATT View Post
    So a Tanto like this was given to the family shire to honor the dead?
    It could be for good luck or a token of thanks. They do not necessarily have a military connection. I have seen a huge blade that is over 48" in cutting edge length mounted in itomaki no tachi mounts that a wealthy samurai commisioned from the 2nd generation Kanewaka and gave it to a shrine in thanks for his son returning safe from an insurrection in the 1640's. Welcome to the Forum!
    BOB

    LIFE'S LOSERS NEVER LEARN FROM THE ERROR OF THEIR WAYS.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Japanese Tanto - Need Translation on Blade Please

    Cool thank you very much for your help as well as ghp95134.I have about 4 more swords I hope you and everybody else can help me with.

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