(鍔ギャラリー⑩) Tsuba Gallery #10
Chūdai Jingo Tsuba (中代甚吾鍔)
Japanese Title: 雷文図鐔 (kaminari mon no zu tsuba)
Material: Iron (tetsu 鉄)
Age: Mid to Late Edo Period (江戸時代中期～後期)
Size: 7.5 cm X 8.0 cm, 3.0 mm at rim
Signature: mumei (無銘)
Shape: Nagamaru-gata （長丸形)
Surface Finish: Tsuchime-ji (槌目地)
This is a handguard (tsuba 鐔) made of well forged iron (tetsu 鉄). It was likely mounted and used on a long sword (katana 刀). The main design done in high relief with a worn gold inlay highlights is a familiar key fret or lighting blot pattern (kaminari-mon 雷文) seen in many other types of Japanese art. It is then surrounded by two raised concentric circles the last circle being the rim of the tsuba. The same key fret pattern is broken up into smaller elements on the reverse side of the tsuba. The inter part of the tsuba surface displays a finely hammered texture (tsuchime-ji 槌目地).
The tsuba is likely the work of the 3rd to 4th generation of Shimizu (志水) Family of the Jingo (甚吾) School. They were employed as silversmiths and sword fittings (tōsōgu 刀装具) makers for the Hosokawa (細川) family lords of the province. The school was based in the castle town of Yatsushiro (八代) in Higo Province (肥後國). This work dates from the mid to late Edo Period about 1710 until 1823 CE.
Provenance: Charlie Foos Collection
Price: $1,050 + Shipping