HIGO DAIJO SADAKUNI
By Fred Weissberg 1/05
Higo Daijo Sadakuni was from Echizen Province. He worked around the beginning of the Shinto Era, around Keicho (1596) and Kanei (1624). There are various stories about the lineage of this smith. Some attribute him to being the younger brother of Higo (no) Kuni Dotanuki Masakuni. And others say he was the younger brother of the first generation Yasutsugu. Some even say he was actually one in the same as the first generation Yasutsugu. In all probability, he was most likely related in some way to the first generation Yasutsugu. All seem to agree that his swords greatly resemble those of Yasutsugu and that he was of the Echizen Yasutsugu School.
Sadakuni received the title of Higo Daijo the same as the first generation Yasutsugu. Many of his remaining works are tanto and hira zukuri wakizashi. He is rated as being equal to Yasutsugu and is most famous for his fine carving of horimono.
The following are the general traits of Higo Daijo Sadakuni:
SUGATA: Katana were rare. Most of his blades were hira-zukuri wakizashi; many were sun-nobi in length. Tanto are also plentiful. Generally hira-niku will be lacking. Unusual shapes like katakiriba and naginata will also be found.
JITETSU: The jigane will be dark and hard. The tendency will be for ko-mokume hada to be mixed with some masame hada. Dark spots that are typical of Echizen-gane will also be found.
HAMON:The width of the hamon tends to be narrow suguba, which is worked in nie. It will have ko-gunome and komidare mixed in and there will be small ashi in good numbers to create much hataraki.
BOSHI:The boshi will turn back in a komaru shape. Most kaeri will be short, but occasionally a longer kaeri can be found.
HORIMONO: Sadakuni was famous for his extremely fine horimono. He is said to have been the teacher of Nagasone Okisato in this area. He made horimono of kenmakiryu (dragon around a sword) and ume (plum branches and flowers). His work rivals the finest Kinai carvers who worked on the blades of Yasutsugu.
NAKAGO:The tip of his nakago will be a shallow kengyo shape. The file marks will be katte-sagari.
MEI: HIGO DAIJO SADAKUNI
HIGO DAIJO FUJIWARA SADAKUNI
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