Sword guard (Tsuba) With Flower Basket Motif (花籠透鐔)

Fittings maker 石黒政明 Ishiguro Masaaki Japanese

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 380

This is the larger guard (tsuba) of a pair of sword guards that is the product of a collaboration among three artists. Ishiguro Masaaki (石黒政明, born 1813) crafted it after a smaller guard (19.71.6) of the same design to create a matching set for the traditional pair of swords worn by a samurai . It features an extraordinary openwork design of a flower basket whose quatrefoil rim is decorated with a Greek-style key pattern inlaid in gold. The smaller guardm for the wakizashi, was made by father and son Hagiya Katsuhira (萩谷勝平, 1804–1886) and Suzuki Katsuhiro (鈴木勝容, 1827–1886) in 1860.

Sword guard (<i>Tsuba</i>) With Flower Basket Motif (花籠透鐔), 石黒政明 Ishiguro Masaaki (Japanese, active 19th century), Iron, copper-silver alloy (<i>shibuichi</i>), gold, silver, copper, Japanese

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