Something for a slow news day: I have been reading The Japanese Sword Column [japan-forward.com] and thought it may be of niche interest to other Soylentils. It is written by Paul Martin [thejapanesesword.com], a noted British expert of Japanese swords. From the introduction [japan-forward.com]:
Along with cherry blossoms and Mount Fuji, the Japanese sword has become one of the enduring symbols of Japan. It has experienced centuries of warfare, evolved through Mongol invasions, survived the introduction of the musket, the end of the samurai era, modernization, and confiscation and destruction by the Allied forces following World War II. They are an anachronism in modern society, yet they continue to be made. They are an integral part of Japanese culture.
Today, I feel very fortunate that we have access to Japanese swords and can observe the artistry of blades that were previously only accessible by Japan’s ancient military and social elites.
I particularly enjoyed the July 25th article, The Changes in the Shape of the Japanese Sword [japan-forward.com]. The articles are short, update infrequently and have plenty of pictures of museum-quality swords. A good fit for those with a casual interest in the subject.