July 8-Aug. 28
As is often depicted in nishiki-e (color woodblock prints), some Edo Period (1603-1868) leading sumo wrestlers, such as the yokozuna (grand champions), were employed by daimyo and allowed to wear swords. Japanese swords also signified a sumo wrestler’s status and authority, with some of them, including tachi (long swords) used in ring-entrance ceremonies, being made by well-known swordsmiths.
The aesthetics and significance of swords in sumo is explored in this exhibition, which also covers techniques of swordsmiths. Sumo-related documents, woodblock prints and keshomawashi (decorative aprons) worn by yokozuna will also be on display.
Osaka Museum of History; 4-1-32 Otemae, Chuo-ku, Osaka. Tanimachi Yon-chome Stn. 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. (Fri. till 8 p.m.). ¥1,000. Closed Tue. 06-6946-5728; www.mus-his.city.osaka.jp/eng