Oshigata Book - Modern Japanese Swordsmiths (1868-1945)
An Oshigata Book of Modern Japanese Swordsmiths 1868-1945. This book was first published in 2001 by John Scott Slough in paperback. John is a family friend, and I know firsthand the effort and care he put into this project. This is the deluxe second printing from 2004, featuring a hard linen cover, and gold leaf lettering on cover and spine (first printing is paperback). This is a limited production, personal library quality reference book which examines modern Japanese swordsmiths from the Meiji, Taisho and Showa periods. It is a must have as English language references are extremely limited. There are a total of 168 oshigata (tang rubbings which show the signature of the smith) and more then 300 smiths listed where no oshigata was available. Each swordsmith represented is cross referenced (when possible) with Hawley's Japanese Swordsmiths, Toko Taikan, Nihonto Meikan, and Gendai Toko Maikan, and information is given on his exhibition results. At 272 pages there are innumerable full size oshigata, extensive documentation, period photos and advertisements, relative values for each smith's work, and much personal information on the smiths themselves. There is also a bibliography listing 26 other titles in both Japanese and English for further research as well as an appendix listing contact information on very respected Japanese sword clubs and societies both within the United States and internationally. Again, this is the foremost reference on modern Japanese swordsmiths in the English language for those who are either experienced collectors or would like to begin learning in the field of gendaito. Whichever you may be this high quality book will last a lifetime.