Katana with wooden Shirasaya
Shirasaya was a specific sword mounting designed to ensure a better preservation of the blade at night or in case of prolonged disuse. The advantage of untreated wood laid in its low acidity and the absence of further substances likely to damage the blade. It was not post-treated, absorbed the humidity of the sword and channelled it away. The Katana kept dry and rust-free.
Shirasaya often bore a signature (‘Sayagaki’) with specifics on the origin of the blade, such as place and time of forging as well as name of swordsmith and assessor.
As the carrying of edged weapons was prohibited by the Emperor by the end of the 19th century, the ornaments and fittings all around the hilt and tsuba were trimmed back, which led to the birth of the Shirasaya design as we know it today. The resemblance of this Katana with a wooden sword or stick would enable its holder to remain unnoticed and to keep carrying it along with him.
– Scabbard and Grip made of wood
– Overall length approx. 98 cm
– Weight approx. 1.4 kg