Browse Items (21 total)

Blade for a Tachi (Slung Sword).jpg
By the artist Kanehira.

Kanehira was one of the smiths of the oldest province of Bizen, the most productive site of sword production from the Heian through the Muromachi period. The steel is layered so many times the blade developes visible steel…

Dai Hannya Nagamitsu.jpg
By the artist Nagamitsu.

"Esteemed as being meibutsu, or a "famous piece," it was given by Ashikaga Yoshiteru (r. 1545–65) to Miyoshi Nagayoshi, a powerful daimyo. Later Oda Nobunaga gave it to Tokugawa Ieyasu to honor his success at the Battle…

Blade for a Tantō (Dagger).jpg


A Tanto is a handheld dagger used most commonly by women and peasants, in fact the only weapon a woman was allowed to posses during this period. However, the most well-crafted of them went to the samurai as secondary weapons to thier swords.…

Early Mounted Short Sword.jpg
by the artist Rai Kunitoshi .

The golden age of swords in Japan is commonly considered to be the Kamakura period. During this time there were many great smiths in the schools of Yamato, Bizen, and Yamashiro that were the common grounds of many…

Eboshi-Shaped Kabuto (Helmet) with Maedate (Crest) in the Form of a Mantis.jpg
This helmet was commission as a family heirloom to represent their power as samurai. Its large form is crafted from an iron base, with paper-mache covered in gold, laquered, then sprinkled with more gold dust. The huge crest resembles the shape of a…

Haramaki.jpg
 
This particular peice of armour was influenced by not only comabtive requirements, but religion as well. The stylized antlers would normally embody an animalistic spirit, but these resemble kaji leaves, revered since ancient times and often used…

Horyu-ji pagoda.jpg
Horyu-ji is a Buddhist temple complex in Japan and contains some of the oldest wooden structures in the world. Located in Ikaruga, Horyu-ji was first built around 607 C.E. but most of the existing buildings come from around 670 C.E. The individual…

Helmet (Suji Kabuto).jpg

The bowl of the helmet, constructed of fifty-two ridged plates, is inscribed with the character Kami, used by the Haruta school of armorers in Nara. The badge on the turnbacks of the neck guard is that of the Sanada family, daimyo of Ueda. This…

Illustrated Tale of Genji - The 44th quire Takekawa.jpg
The aerial view depicted in the 44th chapter is a great compositional device rarely seen in China but greatly utilized by Japanese artists.

Illustrated Tale of Genji - The 49th quire Yadorigi.jpg
Yamato-e is traditionally conceived as a Tang-Dynasty stylistic device, but through the popularization of hand-scroll narratives within the imperial court, Japanese painters were able to refine this decorative technique into something stylistically…

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