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    Sale 1978

    Japanese And Korean Art

    18 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 334

    An Etchu Tachi


    Price Realised  


    An Etchu Tachi
    Late Kamakura period (13th century), attributed to Norishige
    Sugata [configuration]: shinogi-zukuri, iori-mune, shinogi haba slightly narrow with a deep sori
    Kitae [forging pattern]: forged in a running itame pattern mixed with mokume and bold hada tachi overall of strong jinie and wide patches of chikei
    Hamon [tempering pattern]: gentle notare-gunome midare with hints of ko-choji and copious ashi, nioi and nie and yubashiri concentrated along the habuchi with nijuba, sunagashi and kinsuji
    Boshi [tip]: ko-maru hakikake
    Horimono [carving]: bo-hi on both sides
    Nakago [tang]: o-suriage, sakigiri, yasurimegiri, four holes, one filled and one partially filled with gold
    Habaki [collar]: double, gold
    Nagasa [length from tip to beginning of tang]: 27½in. (69.9cm.) Motohaba [width at start of tempered edge]: 1 1/8in. (2.8cm.)
    Sakihaba [width before tip]: 11/16in. (2cm.)
    In shirasaya [wood storage scabbard] with inscription and signed and sealed by Tanobe Michihiro and dated 2007.10 inscribed
    Koshirae [set of mounts]: tachi-goshirae comprising a brown-lacquer saya and tsuka finished to resemble wood and decorated with heraldic crests of bracken ferns and moths in gold and silver takamaki-e and fitted with copper migaki-ji hardware, the rounded-square copper plate tsuba
    With a certificate of registration designating this sword as the 14th Tokubetsu juyo token (Especially important sword) no. 591, issued by the Nihon Bijutsu Token Hozon Kyokai (Society for the Preservation of the Japan Art Sword), dated 1996.5.29 (2)

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    Norishige was a native of Gofuku Go in Etchu province who had studied under Shintogo Kunimitsu together with Yukimitsu and Masamune in Soshu province. His blade characteristics are similar to those of Masamune and Yukimitsu, but his swords have a unique hada of large itame with prominent lines of chikei of flowing and swirling appearance known as matsukawa hada (pine bark), and sometimes known as hijiki hada (an edible seeweed of fibrous appearance). Like the work of Masamune, that of Norishige is reminiscent of some Ko-Bizen work, and blades by Yasutsuna of Hoki province having a dark and ancient aspect. This blade has a hada of itame with mokume and large patterns of chikei. The hamon is a shallow undulating notare with gunome, of deep nioi with copious nie, and with rich variations in plentiful large kinsuji and sunagashi. It is a fine blade with all the characteristics of the best Soshu work, and is immediately identifiable as the work of Norishige.
    The tachi-goshirae is decorated with the family crests of the Nabeshima clan, the ruling family of the Saga domain, Kyushu.


    Hara Michiko
    Nabeshima family, Kyushu, by repute