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Higo Tsuba

Iron sukashi Higo tsuba  (肥後), with a motif of chrysanthemum branches or eda-giku (枝菊).  Distinction among top Higo craftsmen is not always easy, and often very subjective.  It is our view that this tsuba could be categorized either as Nishigaki or Hayashi. This is a favorite motif among Higo tsubako, and variations abound.  The layout of this tsuba is interesting in that the flowers are viewed from the side, while the bounding sukashi is scalloped to represent the flower petals.  Relatively complex and well-balanced design and an overall very pleasing tsuba shape.  The the motif is executed in combination of positive and negative silhouette. The veining of the leaves is delicately carved in kebori (毛彫), and as typical of Higo works, some of the carving encrouches into the seppadai.  The hitsuana are asymmetric and of pleasing high-sided shape.  The sukashi elements are squared while the rim is rounded or maru-mimi (丸耳). Iron quality is excellent, with a fine, dense iron taking on the typical rich dark-brown patina of quality Higo works. This is same high quality iron that was also used on contemporaneous armors.


Measurements: 7.8cm x 7.5cm x 0.4cm

Mid Edo Period (江戸中期)



Higo Nishigaki Tsuba_1300px 



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