Chōunsai Tsunatoshi (fss-845)

This is a beautiful example of a fine quality sword made by Chōunsai Tsunatoshi. Tsunatoshi is a JO-SAKU level swordSmith. This is obviously one of his finest works of art. This sword is flawless, and shows a beautiful tightly forged hada almost looking like mu-ji hada. This is a long sword measuring at 30 inches and comes with high level Tokubetsu papers from the NBTHK. The mounts have been all restored and a new saya has been made so that the blade can be displayed in its mounts. Only the highest level of workmanship was performed on this fine art sword. The saya is ribbed and adds to the elegance of the mounts overall. Tsunatoshi is one of the leading swordsmiths of his time, and this sword should be regarded as a unique and special sword. This blade is a cut above the majority of blades made during the shin-shinto era.  The shirasaya has a sayagaki from Tanobe Sensei.  Note: Tanobe sensei will not do any sayagaki if he feels the sword does not deserve his appraisal on the saya.  Overall this is an excellent high quality beautiful collectable antique Japanese sword by Chōunsai Tsunatoshi.

  • Mei: Kōfu ni oite Chōunsai Tsunatoshi saku – Kōka sannen jūichigatsu kichijitsu (於江府長運斎綱俊作・弘化三年十一月吉日) – “Made by Chōunsai Tsunatoshi on a lucky day in the eleventh month of Kōka three (1846) in Edo.”
  • Date: Edo (1846)
  • Nagasa: 30″ inches
  • Sori: 27.0 mm
  • Width at the ha-machi: 31.0 mm
  • Width at the yokote: 18.8 mm
  • Thickness at the mune-machi: 7.8 mm
  • Construction: Shinogi zukuri
  • Mune: Iori
  • Nakago: Ubu
  • Kitae: Itame
  • Hamon: Gunome
  • Boshi: Maru
  • Condition: Good polish

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Chounsai Tsunatoshi

Tsunatoshi’s (綱俊) family name was Kato (加藤) and he was born around 1800. He was the son of Dewa (no) Kuni Kunihide (国英) and he was the younger brother of Kato Tsunahide (加藤綱英).  The Kato (加藤) family smiths were originally from Yonezawa in Dewa.  Tsunatoshi (綱俊) was called Kato Hachiro.  He has dated works from around 1823 that he made at Azabu, Edo where he did most of his work.   He received the title of Chounsai (長運齋) in Ansei Gannen (1854).  He handed down this title to his son, Koretoshi (是俊), in 1856 and took the new title of Chojusai (長運齋) for himself.  It is said that he received a stipend from the Uesugi Clan.  He died at the age of 66 on the fifth day of December 1863.

Tsunatoshi’s (綱俊) sword making group prospered greatly in Edo (Tôkyo).  He and his students greatly excelled in the making of Bizen style swords.  His skill was great enough to surpass the famous sword-making group led by Suishinshi Masahide (水心子正秀). One of the most famous of all Shinshintô sword smiths, Koyama Munetsugu (固山宗次), is said in some reference books to have been a student of Chounsai Tsunatoshi (長運齋綱俊).  Others have Koyama Munetsugu (固山宗次) as a contemporary of Chounsai Tsunatoshi (長運齋綱俊) and a student of his older brother Kato Tsunahide

(加藤綱英).  Either way, the closeness of their working styles shows that they were related in some way.   Among Tsunatoshi’s (綱俊) other students were Takahashi Naganobu (高橋長信), Ishido Korekazu (石堂是一), Seiryuken Moritoshi (盛俊), and others.

There is no doubt that Chounsai Tsunatoshi (長運齋綱俊) was one of the leading sword smiths of the Shinshintô Period.

While Tsunatoshi (綱俊) did toran-midare like his older brother, Tsunahide (綱英) was famous for; he really excelled when he worked in the Bizen tradition. The sori will be deep koshi-zori and the kasane will be thick. His usual hamon is ko-choji midare or ko-midare.  The hamon will consist of a tight nioi guchi and hard, dark spots can be seen in the yakigashira (upper part of the yakiba).  There will be an uneven pattern of nie covering the nioi guchi.  They will be ara-nie in areas.  The hada is a dense ko-itame hada mixed with o-hada in some areas.  It is so tight that it will almost appear as a muji-hada

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加藤⻑運斎綱俊 生茎九字銘及弘化三年十一月吉日紀有之無地風ニ約ム肌合ニ彼ガ得意トスル匂勝チノ丁子主調 ノ乱ヲ焼キ典型且出来宜矣

Katō Chōunsai Tsunatoshi
Ubu-nakago kyūji-mei oyobi Kōka sannen jūichigatsu kichijitsu ki kore ari. Muji-fū ni tsuzumu hada-ai ni kare ga tokui to suru nioigachi no chōji shuchō no midare o yaki tenkei katsu deki yososhi.
Hachō ni-shaku go-sunbu yo kore ari
Jizai tsuchinoto-i shunshō
Tanzan shirusu + kaõ

Katō Chōunsai Tsunatoshi
[This blade has an] ubu-nakago and bears a nine-character signature and is dated with a lucky day in the eleventh day of Kōka three (1846). It shows a very dense hada that appears as muji-fū and is hardened in a chōji-based midare in nioi-deki. Thus, the work is typical and on top of that of an excellent deki.
Blade length ~ 76.0 cm
Written by Tanzan [pen name of Tanobe Michihiro] in March of the year of the boar of this era (2019) + monogram

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This sword is on consignment.
Special Sale Price
On Hold


New Sale Price $20,500.00

Asking price: $26,500.00

(shipping and insurance included)

Email us if your interested in this item and remember to include the order number for this item: fss-845.

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Kantei-Sho (鑑定書) – Appraisal

No 151098

Katana, signed:     Kōfu ni oite Chōunsai Tsunatoshi saku – Kōka sannen jūichigatsu kichijitsu

                              (於江府長運斎綱俊作・弘化三年十一月吉日) – “Made by Chōunsai Tsunatoshi on a lucky day in the eleventh month of Kōka three (1846) in Edo.”

 nagasa ~ 76.0 cm

According to the result of the shinsa committee of our society, we judge this work as authentic and rank it as Tokubetsu-Hozon Tōken.

April 7, 2006

[Foundation] Nihon Bijutsu Tōken Hozon Kyōkai, NBTHK (日本美術刀劍保存協會)

















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