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Swordstick

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Shikomizue

The shikomizue ("prepared cane") is a Japanese concealed sword disguised as a cane or walking stick, similar to the swordstick. It was easy to hide, and even went well with many disguises, such as travelers, the elderly, or the cripple. It is most famous for its use by the fictional swordmaster Zatoichi.

The name shikomi-zue is actually the name of a type of mounting; the sword blade was placed in a cane-like mounting (tsue), to conceal the fact that it was a sword. These mountings are not to be confused with the Shirasaya mountings, which were just plain wooden mountings with no decorations.

Some shikomi-zue also concealed blinding powders, metsubushi, chains, hooks, and many other things. The shikomi-zue could be carried in public without arousing suspicion, as no one expects the frail old man with a cane to be a threat until it was too late.

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