I’m about to write an article about Higo-No-Kami knives and related knives and interested to find more about the knife.
The president of Moki knives of Japan was so kind to send me a link to your wonderful page.
I tried google translate but wasn’t able to understand the facts.
Perhaps you may give me at least a short summery, when the Higo-No-Kami was developed, who were the most popular manufacturers (or is there only one enterprise with the right to name them Higo-No-Kami), what is the exact meaning of the name and things like that?
This would be so helpful.
Of course I would like to send you our magazine when it’s available in May.
I’m looking forward to your reply.
ご質問は(1)いつ肥後守が作られたの？ (2)最も有名な肥後守メーカーは？ (3)肥後守という商標を使ってる企業は一つだけ？ (4)肥後守ってどういう意味？
>when the Higo-No-Kami was developed,
*the knife named “Hirata knife” made in Hirata, MIki city at hyogo pref. about 1893-1905. I don’t know detail of Hirata knife. but it was probably engraved “higonokami” on the sheath(handle).
*Higonokami began to be made instead of the Hirata knife around 1905.
>who were the most popular manufacturers
*It seems that it is Nagao at Miki city. “Kanekoma” is Nagao’s brand. “Higonokami kanekoma” is sold even now.
>is there only one enterprise with the right to name them Higo-No-Kami
*The knife guild was established in 1899 at Miki city.
*As for “Higonokami”, trademark registration was made 1910.
*The manufacturer who has joined in the guild was able to use freely the name of “Higonokami”.
>what is the exact meaning of the name and things like that?
*”Higo no kami” means “governor of Higo”. Kami was a kind of official rank.
*Higo Province is a thing of present Kumamoto Prefecture (at south west of Japan).
*The selected maker(Katana kaji) was allowed to use the name of “kami”. Once upon a time, maker had a custom which writes a “xx kami” and maker’s name to a blade handle.
*There is an opinion that the prototype of Higonokami was come from Kumamoto.
*At the event which turns off the helmet in 1886, only the sword from Kumamoto succeeded. It seems the story made it still more famous.
*I think that Higonokami named from cool image, without deep idea. But I admire that all the members of the guild kept quality good together.
I am writing from Taiwan about some penny knives I found in an old warehouse in xxxxx, where I grew up.
About one month ago I had an opportunity to visit the warehouse, where I found a box full of never-used HIGO-no-KAMI penny knives. Most of them are still in mint condition. I was told that these knives were stored here for more than 50 years. I thought you might be interested in this finding, and that’s why I am contacting you.
I have attached photos of the two different sizes of knives. I presently have 100 of the knives in each size.
I checked your photos, but cannot find the same type. I even checked another site, but had difficulty finding the same models. I am quite interested to know if these are bona fide HIGO-no-KAMI knives, as well as the production period.
Some of my friends who saw these penny knives are very interested in them. I would like to know what the value of these antique knives would be should they want to acquire them from me.
Of course, if these are truly valuable antiques, sending them back to museum would be the best home for them, especially for people who understand their history. I also think that a personal collection is only for one generation, while a museum’s collection is everlasting.