Copyright Robert Cole 2015 - No copying or distributing


There are several dating schemes:
     -NENGO - Japan's time periods
     -KANSHI - Chinese import, repeating 60 year cycle
     -Years since Imperial ascention JIMMU-TENNO, 660 BC

NENGO are the changing set of common time periods, originally marking the
ascention of a new Emperor. Proclaiming a new time often became 
politically convenient and the occasion of NENGO was expanded. There has 
been several changes of habit regarding the reasoning for changing NENGO.

There has been 232 NENGO from TAI-KA 645, if counting is inclusive to
HEI-SEI 1989. 229 to the MEI-JI 1868. One must remember that the 1st year
of a NENGO is the beginning year, so that adding years to dates must give
one year to that first NENGO year. For instance, SHO-WA is 1926.
Consequently, the third year of SHO-WA is 1928.
NENGO is the most common found date system and is presented for reference 
both alphabetically and chronologically at the back of these books.

      1926 1927 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934
      ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____
     |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |    |
     |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 |  5 |  6 |  7 |  8 |  9 |

Swords making use of NENGO are carried forth in block form much the same 
as signatures. 

     Show dating block schmatics

Dates KANSHI is a system of time-marking imported from China that comprises a  60 year, repeating cycle of years. This is the "Trunks and Twigs" or  "Trees & Branches" cycle. The Five Elements visit us twice as Elder Brother and Younger Brother, hense there are 10, or the "Ten Trunks" JIKKAN, also: "Ten Shields"
                 KI-no-E               Elder Wood  
                 KI-no-TO            Younger Wood
                 HI-no-E               Elder Fire
                 HI-no-TO            Younger Fire
             TSUCHI-no-E               Elder Earth
             TSUCHI-no-TO            Younger Earth
                 KA-no-E               Elder Metal
                 KA-no-TO            Younger Metal
               MIZU-no-E               Elder Water
               MIZU-no-TO            Younger Water 

JU-NI-SHI, the "Twelve Branches" or "Twelve Twigs" are the 12 signs of the

1st        NE       Year of the Rat     11PM - 1AM   North
2nd        USHI     Year of the Ox       1AM - 3AM
3rd        TORA     Year of the Tiger    3AM - 5AM
4th        U        Year of the Hare     5AM - 7AM   East
5th        TATSU    Year of the Dragon   7AM - 9AM
6th        MI       Year of the Snake    9AM - 11AM
7th        UMA      Year of the Horse   11AM - 1PM   South
8th        HITSUJI  Year of the Goat     1PM - 3PM
9th        SARU     Year of the Monkey   3PM - 5PM
10th       TORI     Year of the Bird     5PM - 7PM   West
11th       INU      Year of the Dog      7PM - 9PM
12th       I        Year of the Boar     9PM - 11PM
Put together on a stream of years, the offset of 12 JUNISHI running along
with 10 JIKKAN produces the set anew every 60 years

        ~KInoE NE come together every 60 years~

   "Elder Brother 
          of Wood"   KInoE       NE "The Year of the Rat"
            10 years        |
                            |       12 years
                    KInoE __|
                            |__ NE
            10 years        |  
                            |       12 years
                    KInoE __|
            10 years        |__ NE
                    KInoE __|       12 years
            10 years        |
                            |__ NE
                    KInoE __|
                            |       12 years
            10 years        |
                            |__ NE           

See charting in Appendices for all KANSHI and their cross referenced dates.

One will also encounter sword dates of some number of years amounting 
toward 2500 years. 1800 A.D. of the Christian calendar would be 2460 years 
of Imperial rule. These are most likely referencing the reign of 
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