Canton ship tsuba overall
This item has been sold.

77.8 x 75 x 4.7 mm


101 grams


Iron, gold, copper


Canton, China

For the Japanese market


18th or 19th century


Anything similar for sale?

Contact me


Among Nanban tsuba there is a genre that is best described as "Asian export sword guards," and among those, there is a distinct group that was made in China, for the Japanese market. The production center was most likely Canton.

For more information, see my article: Nanban tsuba, a Canton group.


This example

With the characteristic lingzhi mushroom elements in the center, surrounded by pierced openwork with fine openwork with nine undercut elements. The designs feature a tiny water dragon at the top with its characteristic split tail. Water dragons are auspicious, lesser dragons of Chinese mythology. 

At the bottom is a ship with two people wearing high, wide-brimmed hats. They may represent Dutch or Koreans.

The rim is not beaded as is usually the case, but it has two finely chiseled dragons around its circumference.

It has a copper insert in the tang opening, indicating it had been fitted to a sword.

A rarer type, cheap because of its condition.


Canton ship tsuba


Canton ship tsuba rim


Do you have anything for sale?

I might be interested in buying it.

Contact me
Currently available:

Of pierced iron, elaborately cut with lotus petal border.


Unusual tsuba with foreign figures and Chinese auspicious symbols.


Pierced and chiseled showing an 18th century European vessel.


One of his classic designs, signed by the maker.


Very finely carved with designs reminiscent of export wares.


In the style of northern work of the 16th and 17th centuries