Creating or Editing Swordsmith Records

This guide outlines the general principles of smith record submission and provides detailed explanation of fields available in smith record.

Please note that this feature is only available for registered users included into Site Contributor access group. Go to Create new account page to become a member of Send a message to the Administrator or post in the Support forum to be added to the Site Contributor group.

The structure of smith records is inspired by Hawley’s fundamental Japanese Swordsmiths book and few modern smith databases, online and offline with intention to blend the classical 'tabular' and 'business card' format with a fully featured article, with records interconnected by hypertext links for easier navigation between smiths, schools, groups, blades etc.

New records can be created by using an option Swordsmith record from Create content page (link available in the menu). Existing records can be edited by using EDIT button at the top of the smith record page.

Formal Name

The first field (required) is the smith’s formal name.

Smith names

Smith record has 3 fields for names: Formal Name, Alternative Name and Name (Kanji). Also, there is Generation field in Lineage section. Being used in a consistent way, it may improve record’s readability and avoid confusion.

Formal name is the smith’s professional name or last name. Alternative name (if exists) is a more personalized name (see examples below), e.g. a composition of formal name and zokumei (personal name, art name) or school/group or province or title or traditional nickname. Note: smith’s real name can be also used as an alternative name (especially for modern smiths), if it improved record’s readability. While formal names keep records precise and scholarly, alternative names can make them more recognizable and easy to browse in the lists (e.g. lists of smiths attributed to a particular school or place or time), as the most common formal names had been used by hundreds of smiths. Kanji name should always be the formal name written in Kanji.

Example 1 (zokumei + generation): Yosozaemon Sukesada (Shodai)
Formal Name: Sukesada
Alternative Name: Yosozaemon Sukesada
Name (Kanji): 祐定 (not 与三左衛門祐定 !)
Generation: 1st

Example 2: Shintogo Kunimitsu
Formal Name: Kunimitsu
Alternative Name: Shintogo Kunimitsu
Name (Kanji): 国光 (not 新藤五国光 !)

Example 3 (traditional, distinctive name): No-Sada
Formal Name: Kanesada
Alternative Name: ‘No-Sada’ Kanesada or even No-Sada, or empty.
Name (Kanji): 兼定

Example 4 (place/school/group): Sanjo Munechika
Formal Name: Munechika
Alternative Name: Sanjo Munechika
Name (Kanji): 宗近 (not 三条宗近 !)

The remaining record is divided into 6 sections:

  • General
  • Lineage
  • Ratings
  • References
  • Signatures
  • Notes

To get the information about each section, use the links at the bottom of this page.

Also, Categories can be entered. Category is an additional way to classify or group smiths in order to allow browsing smith records by the chosen category. Currently, there are 2 category types: Ministry of Education Rating (Juyo Bunkazai and National Treasure (Kokuho) ) and Famous Smith Groups (e.g. Goban Kaji or Masamune Juttetsu).

Each record can have a number or related links (See Related links option of the form) and file attachments (See File attachments option).