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This is an outstanding sword produced by the famous sword Smith named Gassan Sadakazu. Born in 1836 and died in 1918, he was a member of the most famous sword-making family in Japan. Gassan was appointed by Emperor Meiji as the Imperial court smith in 1906, and is known for producing swords of the highest quality. Both his father and brother made swords as well. Gassan is rated Jo Jo Saku which is the 2nd highest rating a smith could be given. This sword is made in the style of weapons made during the Heian period, which was the last pereiod in Japanese classical history, running from 794 to 1185. The gold plated Tachi style mounts are precision made, and plated in 24 karat gold. Swords like this were given as gifts to members of the royal family on special occasions, and swords by this smith reside in museums around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art's renowned collection. These mounts are richly gilded, with a beautiful lacqueured scabbard. Blade is phenomenal, in mint condition, and made to resemble the slender blades of the Heian period.