• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7582

    Japanese Art and Design

    14 May 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 196

    A CHOKUTO [straight sword]


    Price Realised  


    A CHOKUTO [straight sword]
    A Meiji period copy of the chokuto [straight sword] number 1 in Inner Store number 8 of the Shosoin, the 8th century treasure repository of the Todaiji temple in Nara, which was built to house the effects of the Emperor Shomu after his death in 756 AD.
    The blade is 64.4cm long, and appears to be a faithful copy with a narrow suguha hamon like the original

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    Following the Meiji restoration in 1867 the Emperor permitted a number of objects in the Shosoin to be copied by the greatest craftsmen of the day for the edification of the people and the promotion of traditional crafts. Like the original the metal fittings are of gilt copper with karakusa kebori on a nanako ground, excepting for the rim of the kojiri, which was of silver, but is missing from this piece. Like the original also, the scabbard is of black lacquer with depleted scrolling in mitsuda-e.

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