Copyright Robert Cole 2015- No copying or distributing

The 150 year SUE-BIZEN saw the style transition from OEI, and the
product of its last 5 generations feed the constant craving of 
the SENGOKU "Hundred Year Wars"

Technical: SUGATA - Blades began to shorten following O-EI and
                    were made strong and wide with shallow 
                    curvature after BUN-MEI 1469. The SENGOKU 
                    "Time of Battles" found lengthening a little
                    beyond that of OEI. Some SUE-BIZEN with 
                    raised SHINOGI.
             HADA - Pronounced KO-MOKUME or MOKUME HADA that 
                    appears soft.
            HAMON - Some SUGUHA or quite often GUNOME-MIDARE, 
                    NOTARE-MIDARE and some GUNOME-CHOJI MIDARE. 
                    "Crab-claw" CHOJI. HOTSURE. ASHI can be thick.
                    NIOI and KO-NIE. NIE-KUZURE. Some SUE-BIZEN
                    masterworks have exceptionally handsome HAMON.
            BOSHI - MIDARE. Can be GUNOME-MIDARE, even a mix
                    of KO-CHOJI MIDARE that may appear crowded. 
                    Most have KO-MARU.
           NAKAGO - BIZEN NAKAGO. Signatures usually include 
                    province, town and smith but occasionally 
                    a personal name is included or perhaps 
                    the name of the destined owner. Note: Long
                    MEI in SUE-BIZEN may have increased sales 
                    potential over otherwise similar pieces.

SUE-BIZEN thumbers: 
      -Crab-claw CHOJI rings KATSUMITSU/MUNEMITSU bell. 
      -SUGUHA whispers TADAMITSU and KIYOMITSU. 
      -NORIMITSU is complex KO-CHOJI - not usually high-reaching. 
      -SUKESADA, look for high mounds with wide valleys.

Smith lines walk straight through three SUE-BIZEN work periods
|                                          |
|       "KANSHO"  -  Early SUE-BIZEN       |
|   * OEI to MUROMACHI Style Transition *  |

      |                                |
      |    BUN-MEI - MUROMACHI BIZEN   |
      |     forward of BUN-MEI 1469    |

        |                            |
        |        The SENGOKU         |
        |   forward of MEI-O 1492    |

            |                                        |
            |      "KANSHO"   -   Early SUE-BIZEN    |
            |                                        |
            |    OEI to MUROMACHI Style Transition   |
            |    KA-KICHI 1441 through O-NIN 1467    |

In swords, the OEI is a style-period. Although technically in 
MUROMACHI times, OEI is different by style from MUROMACHI BIZEN.
OEI-style grows from the O-EI of around 1400, and continues into
EI-KYO, forward of 1429. The EI-KYO shows us OEI-style on the 
wane coupled to the rising presence of a new MUROMACHI style for
the emerging SUE-BIZEN era.

Following the time of the EIKYO War of 1439 and until O-NIN 1467,
we have the early SUE-BIZEN, MUROMACHI work centered, and 
therefore called, KANSHO BIZEN. 

                EI-KYO 1429  -     -  MEI-O 1492
          <-------------------- | -------------------->
                  KA-KICHI 1441 - O-NIN 1467
                     |--------- | ---------|
                        - KANSHO BIZEN -
                           KAN-SHO 1460 

                    -OEI styles fade 
                    -MUROMACHI style rises

Because smith lines work straight through the SUE-BIZEN, the term
KANSHO has been loosely used by various sources to mean all work
prior to the SENGOKU. 

SUE-BIZEN can be categorized by MUROMACHI work: 
          1 -following OEI style
          2 -arising from the social stability of the BUN-MEI
          3 -of the SENGOKU 

Correct study of Japanese swords is by smith association within
schools. Therefore it should be remembered that SUE-BIZEN smith 
lines walk these three platforms through generational time.

     Early SUE-BIZEN Lines:

                    * KANSHO YOSHIMITSU
                     * KANSHO NORIMITSU
                      * KANSHO SUKEMITSU
                       * KANSHO NORIMITSU
                        * KANSHO TADAMITSU 
Return to: SiteMap