The Legend of Amakuni

traditional japanese forge

 

Famous Japanese Sword Maker

 

A legendary swordsmith, and alleged creator of the first tachi, Amakuni Yasutsuna lived in the Yamato Province around 700 AD. He was employed by the Emperor of Japan at the time, Emperor Monmu, to create weapons for his warriors. Almost no weapons still exist that were crafted by this famous Japanese sword maker, but the double-edged blade named Kogarasu Maru is attributed to him. Learn more about the legend of Yasutsuna from Swords of Northshire today.

 

The Story

 

The story begins with Amakuni and his son, Amakura, standing at the entrance of their smithy and watching as the Emperor’s warriors returned from battle. Leading his soldiers, the Emperor snubbed Amakuni as they marched past — an unusual gesture, as he had always given him some sign of recognition. After realizing the Emperor may be unhappy with him, the master smith turned his attention to the swords carried by the soldiers and saw that nearly half were broken or damaged.

 

What Went Wrong?

 

Amakuni was shocked at the state of the weapons he had forged for the army and collected the remaining pieces for an examination. Seeing that the breaks appeared to be the result of improperly forged swords striking armor and other weapons, he vowed to forge swords that would not break no matter what they hit.

 

A Week in the Forge

 

To deliver on his vow of unbreakable swords, Amakuni and his son locked themselves in their forge and prayed for an entire week to their gods. Then, the real work began. They selected the best iron sand ore available to create Tamagahane and refined it into steel. The two men worked without rest for 31 days. When the sword was finally ready, Amakuni and his son emerged exhausted from their work. While none of the other smiths believed they had forged an unbreakable blade, the two master smiths went ahead and sharpened and polished their new creation.

 

An Army of Unbreakable Swords

 

Now that their technique was refined, Amakuni and his son continued to forge this type of sword and sent them to the emperor for his army. The next time the army returned home, none of the blades forged by the famous Japanese sword maker were broken. Even the Emperor had to comment on their strength, complimenting Amakuni the next time the army passed through his village.

 

Another Legend

 

There is no record that shows when Amakuni died, but there are some who believe he is still alive today. Believers say that he gained immortality from the massive amount of blood shed by the blades he had created.

 

Legendary Swords from Swords of Northshire

 

hand forged traditional japanese katana

 

While we don’t have any swordsmiths as skilled as Amakuni at Swords of Northshire, we strive to pass down the ancient techniques he developed. All of our blades are forged through traditional Japanese methods and are designed to withstand everything from training in the dojo to battle in the real world.


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