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五字忠吉 (Tadayoshi 1st Generation)


肥前国忠吉(Hizen no Kuni Tadayoshi)

 The first generation Tadayoshi(忠吉) was born in 1572 (the 3rd year of the Genki era元亀) in Nagase Village(長瀬), Saga District (佐賀郡, present-day Nagase-cho, Saga City, Saga Prefecture佐賀県佐賀市高木瀬町大字長瀬), as the son of Michihiro Hashimoto(橋本道弘), a retainer of the Ryuzoji(龍造寺) clan.

The Hashimoto family were originally samurai and were considered relatives of the Shoni(少弐氏) clan. Although they served the Ryuzoji clan, Tadayoshi’s grandfather, Morihiro(盛弘), and his father, Michihiro(道弘), were both killed in action on March 24, 1584, during the Battle of Okita Nawate(沖田畷) in Shimabara(島原). At the time, Tadayoshi was only 13 years old and thus unable to fulfill military duties, leading to the forfeiture of their fief.

As a result, the family transitioned to swordsmithing, and in 1596 (the 1st year of the Keicho era慶長元年), they moved to Kyoto to study under Umetada Myojyu(埋忠明寿) in Yamashiro Province(山城国) to hone their skills as swordsmiths. In 1598 (the 3rd year of the Keicho era), they returned to their hometown of Saga Castle Town (present-day Nagase-cho), where the Hashimoto(橋本家) family, recognized for their distinguished lineage by Katsuhira Nabeshima(鍋島勝茂), was appointed as artisans of Saga Domain along with the Taniguchi family and were awarded a stipend of 25 koku, thriving as artisans for generations in the service of the domain.

Depending on the period of production, his swords are divided into Gojitada Mei(五字忠銘), Shogan Mei, Jumin Mei(住人銘), and later Tadahiro Mei(忠広銘).

In the early period, most of his swords bore the signature "Hizen no Kuni Tadayoshi肥前国忠吉." Shogan Mei is, refers to the habit of cutting the signature in a style imitating his handwriting. After discontinuing Shogan Mei, he began to sign his swords as "Hizen no Kuni Jumin Tadayoshi Saku肥前国住人忠吉作," among other variations. In his later years, he received the title of Musashi Daijo(武蔵大掾) and changed his name to "Tadahiro忠広," signing his works as "Musashi Daijo Fujiwara Tadahiro武蔵大掾藤原忠広."


Nagasa 66cm

Motohaba 30.1mm

Sakihaba 23.3mm

Motokasane 7mm

Sakikasane 5mm

Sori 1.8cm



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