A Tanto by Zuisen Minamoto Hideaki
Hideaki's family name was Horii Kaneyoshi. He was born on March 2, 1886 in the village of Shimosakamoto in Shige province. He began his apprenticeship at age 19 under Horri Taneaki and was given the name Kaneaki.
As his experience grew, the token Hozon Kai in 1913 conferred to him the new name of Hideaki. Finally, in 1933, at the height of his career, he once again changed his name to Toshihide; this was due to the conflicting association of his name to the newly born prince.
Hideaki produced many fine blades, many for the imperial family, for high ranking officers and especially, for navy officers. Few of which have survived due to the many deaths at sea. Many of whom went down with their ships.
This Tanto was made in the style of the Bizen tradition, tight Ko-Itame mixed with Mokume Jinie, Chikei. The Hamon is in Nioideki with Choji midare, Ashi, Sunagashi and Kinsuji and is in fresh polish excellent condition. No flaws. He made swords for the royal family and was a top ranking swordsmith of the period.
This particular Naval Tanto was made from one of the guns of the imperial flagship, the battleship Mikasa, built for the Japanese imperial navy in 1890s. The ship served as the flagship of Admiral Togo thoughout the Russo-Japanese war of 1904-1905.