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  • Help please

    Hello all,
    I've been away from the forum a while but am back with some photos of signature I need help with...

    Thank you
    Steve

  • #2
    Paul, (not Steve?) there is one character I will have to check when I get home in a few hours. The rest is well written and in good condition. It promises to be a nice hefty gun.
    Last edited by Teppotai; 06-15-2018, 11:09 AM.
    Piers D - Japan / UK

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    • #3
      On the right it says 二重巻張 力茉 拾五匁 I think. (Certain strokes are unusual, though.)
      The first four are 'Niju Makibari' which means a double helix forging/binding process.
      The next two characters are a problem when read together, especially the second of those which does not exist in the dictionary as it is written. Is it 蒜 with only one 示 below, or 末 below??? It disobeys the rule on both.( The first is 'chikara', probably read 'Riki' or 'Ryoku' in context, depending on that second character.)
      *The other possibility is that it is not the grass Kanmuri on top but U-kanmuri, giving us 力宗 Rikishu, a name. (?)

      The last three are probably Ju-go Mon-me, expressing 15 Mon-me... if you can get the top joint of your thumb into the muzzle.
      Last edited by Teppotai; 06-15-2018, 05:51 AM.
      Piers D - Japan / UK

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      • #4
        On the left is the Mei proper: 江州国友久兵衛 緑寿 Go-shu Kunitomo Kyubei Rokuju. (On the face of it.)

        'Rokuju' has a meaning on its own though, of celebrating 66 years of age in the old counting system, so is it his name or his age, I wonder? If it is his name, he may have had some other way of pronouncing it, but Rokuju is the safest bet for the moment.
        (There is a Kunitomo gun listed for this same smith Kyubei Rokuju of 2 Mon-me ball size, dated Ansei 2, with an inscription declaring himself to be a descendant of the original Kyubei.)
        Last edited by Teppotai; 06-15-2018, 05:52 AM.
        Piers D - Japan / UK

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        • scrotty
          scrotty commented
          Editing a comment
          Thank you Piers, it is, in fact a hefty gun...from what I gather from your comments It appears to have been made by Kyubei Rokuju, likely in the 1850s? I will post a couple of photos of the gun itself below. I appreciate any and all comments.

          Best Regards,

          Steve
          Last edited by scrotty; 06-15-2018, 03:22 PM.

      • #5
        Very good and fast details answer Piers ! Well done👍

        Laurent
        France
        Last edited by gui; 06-15-2018, 09:19 AM.

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        • #6
          Here are a couple of photos of the gun itself.

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          • #7
            A very interesting looking matchlock. The front of the barrel with the large flared muzzle is somewhat unique in its design. It’s clearly made in Kunitomo but at least I can’t place it within a specific gunnery school.
            The overall condition looks to be near mint. Congrats to a very nice matchlock.

            Jan
            Jan - Sweden

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            • #8
              Thank you Jan, I've attached closer photos of the muzzle

              Steve

              Comment


              • #9
                I’ve gone through all my reference books and can’t find a single picture of such a front sight. Personally I can see a kind a breaking wave in that sight.
                The closest thing to that ”over-sized” muzzle is found with so called Choshu-guns.
                This is what I love with Japanese matchlocks, when you think you’ve seen em’ all, one stray pops up.
                Hoping Piers might be able to shed some light on this.

                Jan
                Jan - Sweden

                Comment


                • #10
                  For examples of this front sight, Jan, see pp 101 and 125 in Sawada. You are correct to mention the ‘wave’ which tends to be a feature of Tanegashima-Ryu related schools, referring the name of the founder who had ‘wave’ in his name. (Imagine someone called John Waverly for example in English.)

                  The pronounced muzzle shape is indeed reminiscent of Choshu. Sometimes a gun will tip its hat towards an area or a school, and in this case perhaps it is bowing to both without going the full Monty. I can imagine a gunnery instructor in Choshu owning this gun, wanting to pay homage to roots in the Island of Tanegashima.

                  The gun itself looks to be in beautiful condition.
                  Last edited by Teppotai; 06-16-2018, 04:39 AM.
                  Piers D - Japan / UK

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    A reason for not looking through books late in the evening
                    What does the text at the top of this page read?
                    The gun depicted on page 101 is really strange looking. Like a mash-up between a Tazuke-ryu (trigger+stock), Satsuma:ish (Hibasami) with a drop of crazy gunsmith.
                    Taking into account the short size together with the strange looking stock, it would be very difficult to operate.
                    Also the ”wave-sight” on this on, does not look to really fit in. It’s too big for this short matchlock.
                    (On the picture, the barrel looks to be bent but that’s just me holding up the book to the light)

                    Jan
                    Jan - Sweden

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                    • #12
                      Nanban-Ryu 南蛮流 Southern Barbarian Style
                      Piers D - Japan / UK

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                      • #13
                        Ah, that’s the legendary Nanban-ryu. Not really a favorite of mine
                        But there are many interesting features represented in one single gun.
                        Thanks for the translate!

                        Jan
                        Jan - Sweden

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                        • #14
                          Thank you both for all your insight. Please if you would synopsis’s your impressions, I find the input very interesting but a bit over my head. Here are some additional photos of details. Of interest is the badge (it does not appear to be a mon). Please, Piers,Jan comment

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                          • #15
                            That is a truly lovely piece. That you for sharing it, while you get expert analysis of it from scholars the rest of us get to enjoy the discourse on a remarkably nice matchlock. .
                            Sean Zapara - FL, USA

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