Many years ago an attribution to the Myoju group had been made based on a thin signature (Myoju hori do saku), since removed, carved inside the hi above the tigress. Another attribution was made by Dr. Compton himself in 1965 to Hizen Tadayoshi I, a student of Myoju.
Arguments can be made, however, for a Honikawa attribution specifically to Daijo Fujiwara Kunimichi. He was a swordsmith of the first order, having studied under Kunihiro, receiving the title of Dewa Daijo in the 3rd month of Keicho 20 (1615) and his works are said to surpass those of his master. He was considered one of the leading figures in the Keicho to Keian eras (1596-1650) and many of his blades have been classified as Juyo Bunkazai (Important Cultural Properties). The jigane of this blade is a wavy mokume of a rather heavy configuration on one side and with a more elegant itame on the other. The overall feeling of the blade is one of sturdy construction. The tempering pattern unfolds in a somewhat rolling gonome with emphasis on the well-defined nioi outline and with ko-nie placed in a scattered, uneven arrangement, reminiscent of the blades of Nobukuni of Kyoto. Another Horikawa characteristic is the concerted use of nie between the ji and ha, forming much scattered sunagashi. The strongly tapering tang compares closely to the early Soshu tradition, and Kunimichi is well known among the students of Kunihiro as being the most adept in working in several swordsmithing styles.
The carving of the bamboo is probably original; the one of the tigress is carved later (atobori).