What is Shoubu-zukuri in Japanese Katana terminology?
"Shoubu-zukuri" (菖蒲造り) refers to a style of sword construction often seen in short swords and Wakizashi (sidearms). The term ""Shoubu-zukuri"" is derived from the resemblance of the blade's tapering shape to that of an iris (Shoubu in Japanese) leaf as it narrows towards the tip (Kissaki). When this style is applied to one side of the blade, it is referred to as ""Kata-Shoubu-zukuri"".
This style of construction reflects the practical considerations and aesthetic sensibilities of Japanese swordsmiths. The tapering shape of the blade would have made the sword lighter and easier to handle, while the resemblance to an iris leaf adds a touch of natural beauty. The fact that this style is often seen in short swords and Wakizashi suggests that it was particularly suited to these types of swords."