Samurai Swords 侍刀
1867 the samurai class was abolished in Japan. The Meiji
Restoration redefined the class system and brought Japan into
the modern era. To most people the Samurai are a footnote in
history or larger than life figures on the cinema screen.
Nihonzashi is the Japanese name for a samurai who wears two
swords. They wore two swords as a badge of their office and
while the samurai are gone - their history and their legacy
remain. We at Nihonzashi are dedicated to keeping that legacy
alive. We teach Toyama
Ryu Japanese Swordsmanship in St Petersburg Florida and our
online shop offers the same samurai swords we use in the dojo.
There are plenty of internet sword shops out there, but we bring
practical knowledge that comes from years of studying
Even in an age of advanced weapons there is still a
fascination with the sword. Japanese swordsmanship is no
longer a matter of life and death. Those who study
swordsmanship today are drawn into the art for various reasons.
We dedicate ourselves to keep an ancient art alive in a world
were it has no use. The nature of the samurai changed
after the battle of Sekigahara in 1600 when Tokugawa Ieyasu
defeated his rivals. It was the beginning of the Edo
period and the unification of the country. The highly
tuned combat skills of the samurai were redirected in other
directions. The skills of the battlefield were changed
into martial arts. Toyama Ryu is based on the training
regime created in 1925 for the Japanese military academy.
The long tradition of carrying the samurai sword into battle
continued into WWII.
Nihonzashi offers hand forged high carbon steel samurai
swords and other weapons from CAS Hanwei. They are made in the
Paul Chen Hanwei Forge in China. They are all differentially
tempered using the traditional clay method perfected by the
Japanese. Differential tempering creates a hard edge that stays
sharp and leaves a softer spine that keeps the sword from
breaking. These are not the stainless steel decorative swords
you find in the mall or at the flea market. These are real
swords that we use in our dojo. We cut over 1000 tatami
and bamboo targets a year in the dojo. We can not afford
to have a sword break. With that much tameshigiri (test
cutting) we need swords that keep an good edge week after week.
You may not need that kind of performance in a samurai sword,
but don't you want the real thing? Everyone seems to be
making full tang, functional or battle ready swords, but you
will never find most of those in our dojo. It is not about
the latest sword marketing buzz words. Swordsmanship is
dangerous enough without having to worry about your equipment
CAS Hanwei Tsunami Samurai Sword (Katana)
The two main Japanese samurai swords that we used are called
the Katana and Wakizashi. The matched pair of Katana (long
sword) and Wakizashi (short sword) is called a Daisho. We
are excited that CAS Hanwei /Hanwei Forge offers matched sets of
Katana, Wakizashi, and Tanto. The fittings and even the
character of the blades match. If you are interested,
please go to our Daisho Set page.
The katana is a long sword worn edge up in the obi (Japanese
belt). The wakizashi is a short sword worn as a companion to the
katana. There were many situations where a Samurai was expected
to leave his katana behind, but he would always keep the
wakizashi. The Katana and Wakizashi can be used as a
slashing or stabbing weapon. The Katana can be used with
one or two hands while the Wakizashi is made for one hand.
We teach students how to wear, use, and maintain Katana and
Wakizashi. This is not something you fully learn in a few
classes or even a few months of training. If you have any
questions just email us at
firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to answer them
or point you in the right direction.
Wind and Thunder Katana, Wakizashi, and
So why don't we offer Japanese made samurai swords? At
a starting price of about $10,000 these Japanese swords are well
out of the budget for most collectors. We certainly would
not be using these costly pieces of art for practicing martial
arts. Real swords made in Japan are highly regulated by
the Japanese government. The Government controls both the
swords and their production. Each sword is licensed and
smiths are restricting to making only a set number. This
assures that each is a work of art but drives the price up
beyond the reach of normal people.
is a strange mix of peaceful moving meditation and efficient
bloody harsh reality in Japanese Swordsmanship. It is an art of
life and death. Its origins are 300 years of bloody Japanese
battlefields in an era of constant war. It was refined in the
300 years of rigid social hierarchy that followed. For most a
brief exposure to Swordsmanship that satisfies their curiosity.
For a few it becomes a life long pursuit. Most students move on
within a few months. There is no fire in their eyes and no
immediate reward to keep them motivated. They will soon be off
pursuing the next thing that catches their interest. Only a few
rare students remain to carry on the tradition. Are you one of