Blades are called Yamato Shizu when they are thought to have been made by Shizu Kaneuji or his direct students while Kaneuji was living and teaching in Yamato. They show the characteristics of both the Yamato and Soshu schools since Kaneuji was one of the ten students of Masamune. Kaneuji originally lived in Yamato Tegai where he produced swords in the Tegai tradition and signed with the Yamato style “Kane” kanji character. After studying with Masamune, he established his forge at Shizu in Mino province and from that time he used the Mino style for writing “Kane”. Both Yamato Shizu and Shizu refer to Shizu Saburo Kaneuji. He produced swords from the end of the Kamakura era and into the Nanbokucho era. HIs work style shows workmanship that is very close to Masamune. Their relationship must have been very close.
This is a beautiful katana that was awarded Juyo Token status during the 24th Juyo shinsa held in 1978. The shinsa zufu is translated as follows:
Designated Juyo Token at the 24th Shinsa of July tenth, the 51st year of Showa (1978)
Katana, unsigned: den Yamato Shizu.
Measurements: Length: 71.9 cent.; Curvature: 1.6 cent.; Width at Base: 2.8 cent.; Width at Point: 2.0 cent.; Kissaki Length: 3.4 cent.; Nakago Length: 19.3 cent.; Nakago Curvature: none.
Characteristics: The construction is shinogi-zukuri with a mitsu-mune. The shinogi is high and the curvature is rather shallow. The chu-kissaki is longish. The kitae is itame that is entirely flowing and well covered in ji-nie. There is chikei activity. The hamon is notare mixed with gunome that contains hotsure with a mixing in of yubashiri. The habuchi is well covered in nie, and there are abundant streaks of sunagashi. There is kinsuji activity. The boshi is powerfully brushed, and there is nie-kuzure. The nakago is o-suriage with a kiri (cut straight off) nakago-jiri and kattesagari yasurime. There are two mekugi-ana and the blade is unsigned.
Explanation: This is an o-suriage mumei blade that has been attributed to Yamato Shizu.
Regarding the works of the Yamato Shizu School, in general, these are blades that were made while Shizu Saburo Kaneuji was living in his home province of Yamato, or by his students who remained in Yamato. Among these swords, there are those that are signed Kaneuji, and due to these blades, we have wide understanding of his style of workmanship in Yamato.
As for this style of workmanship, at a glance, it has powerful Yamato characteristics that are Shizu in style.
Regarding this sword, the characteristics are clearly displayed in the ji-ha and there is powerful nie activity. The blade is healthy, and the workmanship is superb.
This blade also come with a nice set of Edo era koshirae that is of the utilitarian type that was worn on an everyday basis by the Samurai who owned this fine blade.