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Nearly Life-Size Touken Ranbu Statue Erected in Fukuyama Castle Park

posted on by Ken Iikura-Gross
See real-life anthropomorphized katana Kousetsu Samonji at Hiroshima Prefecture

Image via twitter.com

Japan is no stranger to named weapons with many historical swords still preserved in museums and collections around Japan and the world. In recent years, though, the popularity of the swords has expanded beyond students of history with the Touken Ranbu franchise. And with the popularity of the franchise near its apex, the legendary sword and character Kousetsu Samonj has received a statue in the sword's current home of Fukuyama City in Hiroshima Prefecture.

In honor of the National Treasure "Tachi Mei Chikushu Ousa (Kousetsu Samonji)," a bronze statue of the Touken Danshi Kousetsu Samonji has been installed at the Fukuyama Castle Park promenade today!

A collaboration event commemorating the installation is being held until Wednesday, March 27. Please stop by Fukuyama City △△

#刀剣乱舞 [Touken Ranbu] #とうらぶ [TouRabu]

Both Touken Ranbu and Fukuyama City's X (formerly Twitter) accounts unveiled the bronze statue on March 2. As a tie-in, the Fukuyama Art Museum and Fukuyama Castle Museum have been offering an original bookmark.

[Finally unveiled 🎊 #刀剣乱舞 [Touken Ranbu] bronze statue]
Today, the nation's first "Touken Ranbu ONLINE Touken Danshi Kousetsu Samonji Statue" was installed at Fukuyama Castle Park Promenade 👏✨
Thank you to everyone who participated in the unveiling ceremony 🤗

Starting today, we are distributing original bookmarks at the Fukuyama Art Museum and Fukuyama Castle Museum ❣️
#とうらぶ [TouRabu]

The history of the sword itself is quite fascinating: According to Touken World, a site that catalogues famous Japanese swords, the Kousetsu Samonji was made by one of Masamune's 10 greatest protégés, Samonji. The sword originally belonged to Itabeoka Kousetsusai, a vassal of the Sengoku Daimyo Hōjō. The sword was later gifted to the Shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu's 10th son, Tokugawa Yorinobu, and had been treated as a family heirloom since. The sword's current owner has loaned the Kousetsu Samonji to the Fukuyama Art Museum for display.

In turn, the Touken Ranbu homepage describes the character Kousetsu Samonji as (roughly translated), “A sword of the Chikuzen swordsmith, Samonji. He is the eldest brother of Samonji who carries the burden of sadness. He has the appearance of a monk, but his eyes are an icy color. He despises fighting and tries to heal his sorrows by praying.” The peace-loving yet sorrowful characterization is fitting, as Itabeoka Kousetsusai was a negotiator during a meeting between Sengoku Shogun's Tokugawa Ieyasu and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and the real sword was gifted to the Ieyasu family after the fall of the Hōjō clan.

The Fukuyama Castle Park is just outside the Fukuyama Castle (North) Exit of Japan Railways' Fukuyama Station. The Fukuyama Castle Museum is on the northeast corner of the castle premises and the Fukuyama Art Museum is on the northwest side of the premises. The park is also home to the Hiroshima Prefecture Historical Museum.

Sources: Touken Ranbu franchise's X/Twitter account, Fukuyama City's Twitter account, Touken Ranbu franchise's website via Otakomu, Touken World

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