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Akao Boat Rudder Tsuba
From the Holbrook collection: a classic early Edo Akao sukashi boat rudder pattern. Exceptional iron with large globular tekotsu in the mimi, and fine granular tekotsu throughout the face. Excellent color and condition. 7.77 cm x 7.68 cm x 4.8 mm. Because of its age, it would likely be the hand of the first or second Echizen Yoshitsugu.
The Shodai Echizen Yoshitsugu, said to be a student of Umetada Myoju, is credited as the founder of Akao school in the early seventeenth century. There are no signed examples of his work. At the encouragement of the Han Lord, he moved to Edo, and was employed by the Bakufu. The second generation became a tsubako whose common name was Kobee, he signed tsuba Akao Yoshitsugu. There is an interesting tsuba, dated Kambun gan san gatsu jitsu (March 1661), with the signature Kawachi no Kuni Akao Kinai.
Proper Shape / Wrong Color