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Kinko Meikan

Listing of Soft-Metal Fittings Makers

BySenichiro MasumotoKenichi Kokubo

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The Kinkō Meikan, by Masumoto and Kokubo, is a collection of photographs of signatures which appear on tsuba and other fittings (fuchi, kozuka and menuki) of the Japanese sword. It gives the artist’s name, province, period and rating. The 1974 edition has 657 pages, with 630 pages of photos with four photos per page. Many entries include biographical information like the artist’s teachers, students, other places of residence and alternate signatures (nom de plume). This book is an English translation produced by John Yumoto and Alan Harvie for the Northern California Japanese Sword Club between 1982 and 1988. Each signature is presented in Romanized form (for example, entry 412d: ANSEI OTSU-BŌ HARU / MASATERU w/KAŌ). In addition, the translators often added notes interpreting the Japanese terms (“Ansei = 1854-1860; otsu-bō = cycle combination for 1855; haru = spring). This book contains a translation of the text but not the photos, so students who want to study the signatures or the relevant kanji (Chinese characters) will also want to get a copy of the Japanese book (out of print, but available used). Still, some readers may be interested in the biographical information and translators’ notes, even without the photos. In 2022, this digitally remastered 2nd edition was produced to correct some minor errors and improve the print quality. This edition is letter sized with 196 pages and softcover binding.


Publication Date
May 22, 2022
All Rights Reserved - Standard Copyright License
By (author): Senichiro Masumoto, By (author): Kenichi Kokubo, Translated by: John Yumoto, Translated by: Alan Harvie, Edited by: Jeffrey Adachi


Perfect Bound
Interior Color
Black & White
US Letter (8.5 x 11 in / 216 x 279 mm)

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