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Samurai sword blade
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The blades made by Japanese swordsmiths from the Heian period (795-1285) onwards are renowned for being both technically and aesthetically outstanding. They were made by repeatedly folding and hammering a piece of iron which was given a final heating and quenching in water to harden the edge. An individual sword blade could be identified by the grain of the body and the hamon, the pattern created by the crystalline structure of the cutting edge.

This tachi blade is signed “Bishi Osafune Moro (Kage)” (Morokage from Osafune in Bizen province). Morokage was one of a group of XIV-century swordsmiths who are thought to have moved from Ōmiya in Kyoto to Osafune. The blade is of the typical long and slender Osafune shape dating from the reign of Ashikaga Yoshimochi (1394-1428). It has a mixed hamon of clove pattern and gunome (abrupt undulation).

Samurai sword blade

From Bizen province, Japan.
Muromachi period,
AD 1400.
Length 69,3 cm.

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