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Japanese WW II military & Nihon-to Reference books 
JAPANESE MILITARY AND CIVIL SWORDS AND DIRKS

By Richard Fuller and Ron Gregory
This book contains majority of Japanese military swords from Kyu-gunto (Western sword mounting influenced), Shin-gunto (army mouting), Kai-gunto (Navy mounting), Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO), and Dirk. It also contains picture of different ranked tassels. It is a very good reference for military collection of Japanese WWII swords. This book has 288 pages.

MILITARY SWORDS OF JAPAN: 1868-1945

By Richard Fuller and Ron Gregory
In additional to different types of military Japanese swords. It contains several example of family crests (Mons), arsenal acceptance stamps and few drawing of Oshigata rubbing tang. It is a good reference in for Japanese military collections. This book has 127 pages.
 

SWORDS OF IMPERIAL JAPAN: 1868-1945

By Jim Dawson
This books contains several types of Japanese military weapons type and provided great pictures of each weapon types. It also illustrated an example of the navy and army type in the sword handle. This book has 158 pages. 
 


 

Modern Japanese Swordsmiths: 1868-1945

By John Slough
I found this book is very useful and great reference in collection Gendaito period. It contains many Oshigatas that one can look up to and compare signature of many different smiths. It provides the Yen values and rank indication of smiths. This book has 272 pages.

 


 

JAPANESE SWORDSMITHS
Commemorative Centenary Edition

By
William Hawley
I do find this book useful and great reference to look up the smith name, year, province and different types of signatures that smith uses.  This comes with two volumes and it covers from Koto to Gendaito period. It is definitely recommended books for anyone who started out to collection and will be useful in the future of Nihonto collection.


 

The Connoisseur's Book of Japanese Swords

By Kokan Nagayama and translated by Kenji Mishina
This is one the first book to recommended for anyone to understand the history of Nihonto and great reference information to Kantei (sword appraisal). It provided a detail characteristics of each period and smith works. It has a lot of information that one must read several times and again to fully understand the unique shape, hamon, hada of each period and of each well-known smiths.  This is one of books I recommended for anyone to read first before purchasing their first sword.
 
 


 

The Japanese Sword: A Comprehensive Guide

By Kanzan Sato and translated by Joe Earle.
This book contains history and evolution of shape changing in Nihonto. It is a great source of information to understanding Nihonto. It has comparison chart of Koto, Shinto and shinshinto in term of shape, hamon, boshi, Yakidashi, hada and tang. It has 209 pages.    


 

NIHON TOKO JITEN

By FUJISHIRO Matsuo.
This book is in Japanese text and it contains two volumes: Koto and Shinto (few Shinshinto smiths). Many collectors found it useful in term of starting out in their collection. It provides rank for each smith, province and unique characteristics of each smith works. It contains many authentic signatures of the smith that one can compared to.

NIHON TOKO JITEN - English Translation

By
Harry Afu Watson
This two volumes (Koto and Shinto) are a supplement to the Japanese text version. It is a must have for non-japanese readers as well as for me. It does not contain Oshigatas but it does translated most of the text in Japanese version.
 

 


 

Here are some of the Nihonto book sellers:

Harry Watson's site: http://www.afuresearch.com/
Michael Harris' site: http://www.satcho.com/
Alan Bale's site: http://www.alanbale.co.uk/index.php (United Kingdom)
W.M. Hawley's site: http://www.wmhawley.com/
Mike M. Yamaguchi's site: http://komonjo.com/
Craig L. Harris' site: http://www.bridgeofdreams.com/