Shizu Saburō, Tamahagane without stamp…

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Shizu Saburō, Tamahagane without stamp…


In continuation on the information about Shizo Saburō,
found in my article “Japanese markings, kanji, symbols” on razors (link),
I want to go deeper on the subject, especially about “Tamahagane” kamisori,
made by Shizo Saburō, which are in fact non-Tamahagane razors…


At some point in time a symbol (kanji) of Tamahagane
began to be placed on the razor itself (see → Orihi)

玉鋼

Tamahagane (Jun) Tamahagane Jun Tamahagane Tamahagane Betsuuci (Jun) Tamahagane Betsuuci Tamahagane Reza-uchi

Tamahagane (玉鋼) is a high quality steel, made of iron sand,
which was/is used to make ancient Japanese katana, knives, razors, tools,…

玉鋼 = Tamahagane, is sometimes preceded with  (jun = pure; genuine),
also frequently accompanied with 別打 = betsuuchi (specially made/forged),
or with レザー打 = rēza-uchi (forged/made razor)


A peculiar something is the following:

 1
Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 2a kopie Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 2b kopie Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 2c kopie
( Kamisori   –  Box (top lid of box)            –           Box (= 玉鋼煉打別製品)


2
Shizu Saburo Tama? 2a


3
Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 1a kopie
 Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 1a kopie 2 Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 1b kopie


The peculiar thing is that these kamisori don’t have
a Tamahagane kanji stamped into the steel:

1Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 2a kopie   2Shizu Saburo Tama? 3eShizu Saburo Tama? 3f   3Shizu Saburo Tamahagane? 1bShizu Saburo Tamahagane? 1h

(特級 = Tokkyū, high grade, 登録商標 = tōroku shōhyō = registered trademark,
志津三郎  = Shizu Saburō (master) (along with 精⌉  = Kanesei)
特別請合 = Tokubetsu ukea(i) = special guarantee) 

On the wrapping paper we find an identical picture of the razor,
without Tamahagane stamp, on the other hand though, there are
Tamahagane markings present on the wrapping paper, also on
the paper, attached to the handle,  and on the box:

1Shizu Saburo Tama? 1e kopie2Shizu Saburo Tama? 2c kopieShizu Saburo Tama? 2dShizu Saburo Tama? 2g kopieShizu Saburo Tama? 2hShizu Saburo Tama? 2j kopie.jpgShizu Saburo Tama? 2k
3Shizu Saburo Tama? 3bShizu Saburo Tama? 3c kopieShizu Saburo Tama? 3dShizu Saburo Tama? 3eShizu Saburo Tama? 3f kopie

Let’s look a bit better at what is written on the box and wrapping paper
(the symbols found at the handle will be referred later):

玉鋼煉打別製品

This first led me to believe that the razor was indeed made of Tamahagane!
They are (understandably) being sold as Tamahagane kamisori as well 

After translating this sentence though, we find:

玉鋼煉打別製品 = Tamakō (Tamahagane) neri da betsu seihin =
Tamahagane practitioners/refiners forging special made products

Because of this, it would seem to be that Shizu Saburō
was using its Tamahagane skills & reputation of this steel for merchandising…
It meant that Shizu Saburō had the skill to make excellent quality products…

In that case, these razors would not be have made of Tamahagane

Then it would make sense that there are Tamahagane kanji on the box
and wrapping paper, and not on the razor itself

The fact that there are indeed genuine Tamahagane made
Shizu Saburō kamisori along with the Tamahagane stamp
on the blade itself supports this idea:

Shizu Saburo Tama? 5cShizu Saburo Tama? 5a kopie

玉鋼(錬?)打 = Tamahagane (refined?) forged

Apparently the same boxes and papers were used as the non-Tamahagane ones…

Other types of Tamahagane Shizu Saburō kamisori can be found, for example:

Shizu Saburo Tama? 7a
(特級 = Tokkyū, high grade, 登録商標 = tōroku shōhyō = registered trademark,
志津三郎  = Shizu Saburō (master) (along with 精⌉  = Kanesei)
玉鋼別打 = Tamahagane betsu uchi = specially made Tamahagane) 

I’ve been able to get different pictures of the wrapping paper around the handle:

Shizu Saburo HANDLE KANJI 1.png Shizu Saburo 3e2 Shizu Saburo 3e2 kopie
(First 3 pictures = front, then 1 from the back, then a detail
from above, lastly more detail of the back)

登録商標 (read from R > L) = tōroku shōhyō, registered trademark

精⌉志津三郎 (read from Up > Down) = Kanesei Shizu Saburō


When putting the text, which is seen on the back, next to the front text,
we get something like this:

Shizu Saburo Tama? 2d  +  Shizu Saburo 3e2 Shizu Saburo 3e2 kopie     ⇒      Shizu Saburo SRP 4 kopie

When all this is put in plain text we’ll get:

切味保証 (read from R > L) = kireaji hoshō = Sharpness guarantee

“七ノ「カミソリ安来
舊名玉鋼ヲ持ツテ錬
打シタル品ナレバ切味優
良ナルヲ保證ス”
志津三郎…”
(read from Up > Down & from R > L, between “…” is 1 sentence written)

At this moment I can’t translate these 2 sentences completely,
the next seems to be right though:

カミソリ= kamisori
安来鋼 = yasugihagane = Yasugi (Yasuki) steel
舊名玉鋼= old, former name/reputation Tamahagane
志津三郎 = Shizu saburō

For now I’m not sure if it means that it is a “Yasuki steel” razor
(which is also made of iron sand, like Tamahagane) and that they refer this
as a type of steel that used to be called “Tamahagane”, again, I’m not sure!
I hope I can figure this out in the future!

For now, I haven’t been able to translate the text on the wrapping paper as well.

For starters, I could translated this for now:

志津三郎 エ場  = Shizu saburō e-ba = Shizu Saburō factories

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