This blade was once part of a Daimyo collection and came with its original registration paper, dated Showa 26 (1951).
A prominent dealer told me that most Kotetsu are Gimei and he said this could be made by Kajihei, a famous forger. However, another dealer friend told me maybe made by Masahiro....
Kajihei trained with Naotane's successor, Naokatsu and was active in making very high quality fakes that emulate of famous old masters during the Meiji Restoration period. (Kajihei-Markussesko.com)
A daimyo blade is indicated by looking at the Japanese sword license, the torokusho. Daimyos were the feudal lords of old Japan.
In that year, the Japanese government implemented a law requiring all swords to be registered and licensing begins on a small scale and daimyos were asked to register their collection of swords and set a precedent. Swords in a Daimyo collection swords are of superior quality and much sought after by collectors.
Since ancient times, it was a Japanese custom to present important swords to prominent people on special occasion.
Big named swords were few and very expensive. A cheaper good quality sword was acquired with the signature of a big named smith added onto the tang to enhance its value.
In a case mentioned in a book, a gimei Kotetsu was later attributed to Kiyomaro at shinsa.
Some dealer told me most of Kotetsu swords are gimei. A gimei is part of Japanese sword history.
Along with a rare and expensive koshirae, it has its original registration carded stated year Showa 26 (( so called Daimyo registration year). The the jigane on this blade looks like Japanese pear (nashi) skin.
The koshirae itself is a beautiful piece of art with rare big same with dragon matching set Kozuka-kogai, Fuchi-Kashira and a big signed iron Choshu tsuba.
The Daimyo registration licence is an addition to its historical provenance but which Daimyo, we do not know.
What we do know is, gifts to Important people could be a fake based on the numerous Showa 26 registered swords that failed at Shinsa, coming onto the market. The quality of those blades is mostly very good and if one were to buy it as a nice Nihonto to enjoy, I think it is fine. Gimei swords are a part of Nihonto history and this sword is very well made.
If It is gimei and have the name removed, this sword would be attributed to some smith but removing its name is like erasing off its colorful history so I am leaving it as it is.
Price : NOT FOR SALE