japanese samurai swords
Samurai sword history and making The Samurai sword history is a long and colorful one. It spans decades of war in Japan. In fact, the development of the Samurai sword can be segregated according to specific eras in Japanese history.

The ancient Samurai sword was made A.D. 900 during the Ken period. They were made of steel and the blades were straight like a regular sword because it was copied from the Chinese sword. The craftsmen at that time were initially Chinese men, but this eventually changed to include the early Japanese craftsmen

From there we go to the oldest period was of A.D. 900 to 1596 called Koto. This was when battles and wars were frequent. The sword became such a common sight to see everywhere. It was a means to getting power. At that time, power was only attained through wars and battles.

It was during the Koto period that the Samurai sword history and making gradually evolved into the single curved blade. It was also during this period that famous sword smiths started their craft. One such man was Yasutsuna who became known for his craftsmanship.

However, since the Samurai sword was a necessity at the time, there were also many mediocre craftsmen who started making swords without checking for quality. This is why we see a lot of Samurai swords from the Koto period which are not well made.

Following the Koto period, the next in the Samurai sword history and making is the Shinto period. It is also called the new sword era. During this time, the long drawn out war ended, and with it the demand for Samurai swords decreased. The daito (long sword) was made shorter and it could now be carried on a person’s side.

The Shinto Samurai sword history and making began the trend of decorating the Samurai sword with dragons, flowers, and other artistic forms of expression.

Most of the Samurai swords in the market or on display were made in this period.

The modern era, also known as the Shin-shinto period was a time when there was tremendous turmoil among the makers of swords. The Samurai sword was suddenly banned, and local craftsmen lost their trade. They turned to making tools for agriculture and livelihood like scissors, hoes, and knives.

For some sad reason Samurai sword history and making became a dead industry. Unfortunately this was also the time when Samurai swords were being shipped out of Japan, mostly as a novelty collectors’ item.

What is now regarded is the Golden Age of the Samurai sword history and making is from 1192 to 1573. These were the periods of the Kamakura and Muromachi. What was most memorable during this period was the fact that sword making became revitalized again, and the legendary Masamune emerged.

This man’s craftsmanship is unheralded throughout Samurai sword history and making. His work is extremely beautiful and unique. In fact these Samurai swords are nor considered national treasures.

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