This is one of the early examples of transitional swords from Samurai era to modernization policy implemented by Emperor Meiji.
The Koto blade was mounted into an early version of the Kyu Gunto mounting which was still very plain with a sakura cherry blossom on the pommel but without the elaborated design of later versions.
The mouth of the saya has an old Katana brass mouth guard and 2 edo era dragon menukis, probably taken from the Samurai Koshirae of the old Koto blade.
The order from Emperor Meiji has to be followed but the sentimental factors of the Samurai culture dies hard in early phase of modernization.
The blade, despite its age, is still in excellent condition and very sharp with some age flaws like micro rust pittings and stains. Scabbard is black painted with 2 hangers. There is a Tachi mouth guard insert onto the saya together with 2 edo era dragon menuki on it.
This makes the whole sword very unique and interesting.
Price : NOT FOR SALE