the katana or shinken


  1.Kissaki :point of the blade .there is four differents shape of  kissaki :

  2.Boshidrawing of the quench line (hamon ) to the point  (kissaki) of the saber  . There is eleven differents :



  3.Mune : The back of the blade  . The backbone of the sword .there is five differents  :


  4.Hasaki : Edge of the blade .

  5.Hamon :Tempered lines . There is differents type  :



There are two types of martensite grain , one fine called  nioi and the other rough  one called nie :





  6.shinogi-ji :The high edge of the face of the blade. This is the highest part of the blade.

  7.ji : Visible steel on the bladeWe can see the jihada which is a pattern created by the forge and revealed by polishing. there are five jihada :


  8.shinogi : Line of separation on all the blade.

  9.ha :The hardest steel on the edge of the blade.

  10.mune machi :Small cut of separation between the blade and the tang of the sword, on the back of the blade.

  11. hamachi : Small cut of separation between the blade and the tang of the sword on the cutting edge of the blade.

  12.mekugi ana : Hole in the tang for the mekugi (Bamboo rivet to block the blade in the handle ). At the level of this hole, we can see the yasuri-me, there is different type of yasuri-me:


  13.Mei : Inscription or signature of the blacksmith who created this blade, sometimes it is poems or cutting tests said tameshigeri.

  14.nakago : The tang of this blade. This part will be inserted in the handle of the sword. there are four main form :


  15.nakago giri : tip of the tang  . there is differents tip of  nakago :


  16.Kashira : Pommel of metal (iron or copper) which makes it possible to maintain all the whole weaving . It is always in association with the fuchi and represents a similar theme.

  17.Tsukamaki : weaving the handle in cotton, silk or leather, this allows to have a better grip of the hand on the handle.

  18.Samegawa : Stingray leather (skate or shark skin) allowing the handle to not be affected by rotting and strengthen the handle. It also adds aesthetics to the handle.

  19.Menuki : Metal parts (iron, copper) that are placed in the center of the handle on each side. They allow better saber holding. They can carry a signature inside their manufacturer and represents a Japanese cultural theme (animal, plants , gods ....)

  20.Fuchi : Metal necklace between the handle and the sword guard. It is always associated with kashira and represents a similar cultural theme. It bears the signature of the manufacturer.

  21.Tsuba : One of the most important pieces of sword mounts. Both useful for defense or to draw. It is from the 16th century that the tsubas will be more and more decorate and that the big schools of tsuba developed. Before, they were created by blacksmiths of sabers or armor but from the Edo period, the manufacturers of tsuba become a separate profession. Here are the technical terms of tsubas:


here are some different different forms of tsuba :


  22. Seppa : Metal pieces that are used between fuchi and tsuba and another room between tsuba and habaki. They allow to not damaged more noble pieces but also perfectly block the whole of the sword.

  23. Habaki : Metal collar between the blade and the tsuba that allows the blade to fit perfectly in the saya.

  24. Hi : grooves  on the blade surface to lighten the blade and run out the blood .

  25. Koiguchi :"carp mouth " , openning of the scabbard or saya.

  26.Kogai : Long metal pin with an ornament that is in the saya in a location for this purpose. It is especially present in tanto and sword short, it is used to repair his saddle or even to clean the hooves of the horses. In the 17th century, some are divided in two and serve as cover.

  26*.Kozuka :Small knife that is in a location of the saya .It can be used as a throwing weapon  or for other use. The handle is decorated as often as the blade bears the signature of the blacksmith he has created.

  27.Kurikata : Wooden or steel protuberance (sometimes decorated)  that is on the saya that serves to pass the sageo.

  28.Sageo : Cotton or silk cord to help keep the sword in the hakama and in its belt.

  29.Saya : Wooden scabbard often lacquered, carved or covered with stingray leather protecting the blade. It is made of magnolia because of its resistance to moisture. Shirasaya are sheaths for storing and transporting the blades.

  30.Kojiri : Final metal piece on the saya to protect it from shocks often stylized following a Japanese cultural theme.