Sword Guard (Tsuba) in the Japanese Style
Not on view
This is an example of a Southeast Asian sword guard that combines stylistic elements from European smallsword guards with Asian forms of decorative styles. With this mixture of styles, this piece can be recognized as part of a rare but distinct group of sword guards currently categorized under the term “Asian Export Sword Guards” that were commissioned by maritime traders such as the Dutch. Due to the opening added later to accomodate a utility knife (kozuka), this guard was probably used at some point in time in Japan.