Lenticular tsuba with poem


  • Catalogue text

    Thick, lenticular; fine ishime ground with a poem encrusted in shibuichi; on the front, in shibuichi with gold details, is also the seated figure of the reputed author of the lines, Kakinomoto no Hitomaro (7th - 8th century); on the back, where some of the writing is in the copper, is further a boat riding on waves; shakudō rim.

    Ernest Hart Collection, no.136. The poem reads:

    Honobo to
    Akashi no ura no
    asagiri ni
    shima-kakure yuku
    fune no shi zo omou

    Dimly methought that
    By Akashi's shore
    There came boats wrapped
    In the morning mist,
    Only to vanish
    Behind an island.

    See H.L.Joly, Inscriptions on Japanese Sword Fittings in Transactions of the Japan Society, London, Vol.XV, pp.109-110, pl.IV.

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