© Copyright Robert Cole 2015 - No copying or distributing - Note: Missing graphics
There are collectors with interest in fittings only and some, in certain types of fittings only. This, of course, sets demand and creates a market.
Fittings were made in sets and are collected in sets, and are the more valuable the more matching pieces are in a set. As with any antique, condition and rarity peak the price.
Matching pieces, called KODOGU, are kept in small wooden storage boxes when not outfitted as sword furniture.
The ring shaped collet "FUCHI" and end pommel "KASHIRA" are found outfitted on a sword handle, or TSUKA. When referring to both, these are called FUCHI-KASHIRA.
The two pieces held in the handle wrappings are MENUKI.
|///ARTWORK/// Whole fittings package|
Each set, when not dressed as furniture, is kept together in its own storage box.
The sword guard, or TSUBA, is kept in its own box.
There are pieces that were made for the scabbard or SAYA and, when not dressed as furniture, are likewise stored together.
Some swords have a utility knife and grooming utensil, KODZUKA and KOGAI, which are also kept and collected in sets.
The FUCHI-KASHIRA, MENUKI, TSUBA, KODZUKA and KOGAI as well as SAYA furniture: KOI-GUCHI, KURIKATA, possibly with SHITOTOME, SAGURI and KOJIRI and any metal, partly metal, or any otherwise specially created sword fixture are collectible and valuable in their own right. Whether dressed as furniture or included in sets, KODOGU have value attendant to that of the sword blade.
The appraiser places value in this order:
- SAYA and its fittings
The coordination of motif and package as a whole is also considered and, while very important, it is to be remembered that this aspect is of value only while these pieces remain together.
A good appraisal distinguishes, and values separately, actual matched sets.
DO NOT DISMANTLE DRESSED SWORD FURNITURE TO OBTAIN FITTINGS
Mounted fittings may have a history that far outweighs any personal passions for collecting or purveyance.