What is Sokomei in Japanese Katana terminology?
"""Sokomei"" (底銘) refers to a state where the inscription cut into the tang (Nakago) of the sword is barely visible. This can occur due to the application of a file (Yasuri) for the purpose of erasing the inscription (Meikeshi), or due to corrosion (Kuchikomi), which leaves only faint traces of the chisel marks (Taganeato).
This term highlights the various factors that can affect the visibility of the inscription on a sword. The application of a file for the purpose of erasing the inscription reflects the changes in ownership or the desire to conceal the identity of the swordsmith. Corrosion, on the other hand, is a natural process that can occur over time, especially if the sword is not properly maintained. Despite these factors, the fact that the inscription is still faintly visible underscores the resilience of the sword and the enduring nature of the swordsmith's work."