This is an exquisite eight plate russet iron helmet bowl that is signed Yoshimichi (義道). The shape of the plates is slightly rounded giving the bowl an overall feeling that is typical of Yoshimichi. Each plate is attached by eight rivets that have been smoothed down and are perfectly spaced apart. Attached to the front of the bowl by three large rivets is a one-piece iron mabisashi in typical koma-no-tsuma (horse hoof) shape found in the work of Yoshimichi (義道) with the harai-date (maedate holder) conforming to this pattern.
At the crown of the helmet, the tehen-no-kanamono is comprised of six layers of brass and copper decorative rings standing quite tall on the peak of the bowl. There is no shikkoro, but the metal of the bowl is not fatigued in any respect and it is ready to have one mounted.
Myochin Yoshimichi (明珍義道)is one of the three big makers of the early Myochin (明珍)line. He worked around 1521-1531 during the late Muromachi era. He is rated as a Sai Jo 1 maker. I have not had the signature authenticated, but the quality of the workmanship speaks volumes. Myochin Yoshimichi (明珍義道)is credited with the invention of the rounded type of helmet plate which provides for a small air space where the plated overlap. This feature was said to weaken the impact of an arrow. This helmet bowl exhibits those characteristics.