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Novice Course 3rd Edition

ByYoshikawa KoenGordon Robson

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This “Novice Course” on Japanese swords (Nihonto) was first written as a series of articles by Yoshikawa Kôen sensei for the Nihon Tôken Hozon Kai (NTHK). Dr. Gordon Robson translated the text into English for the Northern California Japanese Sword Club (NCJSC) and organized the material into book form in 1990-1992. The second edition, from 2022, is a digital remastering of the book which has improved print and image quality and incorporates some updated material by Dr. Robson. A little over half the book introduces the reader to the Gokaden (Five Traditions) since, as the author tells us, “Every Nihonto which has come down to us today has its roots in the Gokaden, and each of these tradition’s characteristics are present in the style of work found in these blades.” The rest of the book includes a glossary of sword terms (in Japanese and English) and chapters on the principles of sword polishing and making oshigata. Also included is a chapter on the NTHK shinsa (screening) system, explaining the point system and how to read “papers.” Chapter Titles: • History of the Japanese Sword and Its Stylistic Evolution • Sword Terms • Yamato-Den • Yamashiro-Den • Bizen-Den • Sôshû-Den • Mino-Den • The Shinsa System • Making Oshigata • Glossary of Sword Terms • General Principles of Polishing The oshigata in this 3rd edition have been updated with new scans from the translator.


Publication Date
May 23, 2023
All Rights Reserved - Standard Copyright License
By (author): Yoshikawa Koen, Translated by: Gordon Robson, Edited by: Jeffrey Adachi


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

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