“Nihonto”, the sword of Japanese samurai2013.01.08
“Japanese sword”, which called “Nihonto” in Japanese was not only used as a battle sword but also artworks, because it has beautiful figure with the meaning of “the soul of the samurai”.
In samurai society, it was respected as the symbol of authority.The Japanese sword has begun to be made with bronze for about 1,600 years ago.
The production of the sword using iron began 1500 years ago, and it is the basic style to the present.It reached the highest quality in the Kamakura era, (approximately 1,100 years ago) but it decreased in the Muromachi era (approximately 1,300 years ago), because of mass-produced.It was allowed for the common people to own a sword until approximately 430 years ago, but Hideyoshi Toyotomi who was the general of the samurai made a rule that only samurai can own a sword, therefore farmers, priests, merchants are prohibited to own a sword.?It is said that Japanese people has weaker body construction than European people, so it was difficult to swing very heavy European-style sword.?Therefore, Japanese people strengthened sharpness of their sword.?However, there is a severe rule that “Japanese must not change the traditional sword manufacturing method” even in nowadays.Therefore, sharpness, hardness, and the rust tolerance of present sword are the same as the sword in the old days.?Actually, it is said that a kitchen knife has better sharpness than Japanese sword.Anyway, it is true that Japanese sword is great cultural properties .?Please enjoy the movie how to make Japanese Sword.