Q407. Mid Nambokucho Tanto, Tokubetsu Hozon and Saya-gaki to Bizen Morisuke
Q407. Mumei tanto in shira-saya, papered to Bizen Osafune Morisuke.
Nagasa: 11 9/16″ 29.3 cm.
Sori: .4 cm.
Moto haba: 3.1 cm
Moto kasane: .4 cm.
Nakago nagasa: 3 9/16″ 9 cm.
Overall in shira-saya: 18″ 45.7 cm.
Hira zukuri, iore mune, bo-hi on both sides, ubu nakago, 2 mekugi-ana. The hada is small itame mokume in fine ji-nie; there is bo utsuri. The hamon is overall suguba composed of shallow gunome notare with sunagashi, ashi and hotsure. The boshi is 0-maru with a medium kaeri, swept (especially on the omote), and there is mune-yaki near the top on both sides. With the exception of 1 small divot under the habaki on the ura, there are no flaws. The tanto is in polish (very well done and intact) and mounted with a silver foil habaki and high quality shira-saya.
There is a saya gaki by Mr. Tanobe of the NBTHK, which (translated by Markus Sesko) reads:
Bizen no Kuni Osafune Morisuke
Tadashi ubu-nakag mumei nari. Jidai Nanbokuchō-chūki dōkō ni wa Enbun oyobi Jōji no nenki o
yū-suru zaimei-saku ga sonzai-shi honsaku wa sore ni sukoburu kinji-shi deki iu nari.
Honsaku hachō kyū-sun shichi-bu chaku nari
Koretoki tsuchinoto-ushidoshi yayoi ryōgi no hi Tanzan Hendō shirusu + kaō
Osafune Morisuke from Bizen Province
[This blade has an] ubu-nakago and is mumei. Morisuke was a smith from the mid-Nanbokuchō
period and there exist work from him which are dated between Enbun (1356-1361) and Jōji
(1362-1368) and which are very similar to this blade, which is of an excellent deki.
Blade length ~ 29.3 cm
Written by Tanzan Hendō [Tanobe Michihiro] on a lucky day in March of the year of the ox of this
era (2009) + monogram
There are both Hozon and Tokubetsu Hozon papers from the NBTHK. The Hozon, dated 2018, gives this tanto to Osafune Morisuke Mid Nambokucho, and the Tokubetsu Hozon, dated 2009, gives to Osafune Morisuke. No idea why the double paper; maybe the former owner misplaced the Tokuho and resubmitted, and then found the missing paper.
Morisuke is rated Chu Jo Saku in Fujishiro’s Nihon Toko Jiten; he was no slouch. This tanto is fine, quite nice; you should be well pleased with it. 1 pound. $5,250.