B474. Token Bijutsu English edition. All 59 issues
B474. Token Bijutsu English edition by the NBTHK. Volume 1 was released in 1979. The last volume published was # 59, 15 years later. softbound, 7 1/4 x 10 1/4", maybe 2,500 pages in English. "Token Bijutsu" is easily the very best Nihonto reference in English; nothing else even comes close to the depth of study and quality of production. Great swords from all periods, great kodogu and koshirae, crisp photography and well done oshigata, thorough write ups by the staff at the NBTHK & National Sword Museum in Tokyo, dozens of articles on all aspects of sword study, and so much more. All 59 issues are indexed in at least 2 online indexes, which makes the set very easy to use. When I need to research a smith, this is the reference I reach for first. I have a word doc of corrections to the 59 volumes; if you buy the set remind me to send it.
Full sets are incredibly difficult to find; I get maybe 1 or 2 a year. I know of no other sets available now anywhere. Again, I can't overemphasize the importance of this reference. It is simply the best in English.
There is a light stain on the front cover of # 16 and a few small spots on the back cover of # 41. There is the usual for these books bit of fraying of the outer paper of some of the spines (quite minor except for one issue which is a bit worse but still only a cosmetic defect) and many of the spines are pristine. All in all, condition is excellent. 22 pounds, 13 ounces. $1,600.
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