We sometimes get asked if we have any documentation, provenance, proof / verification, or certification of an item we are selling.
Everything we have we show on the item page; there is no more.
Things like certificates from museums / NBTHK (Japanese blade authority) take time and cost money; our sales prices are a lot lower than you will pay for items elsewhere with such certifications. So, no, we do not have them; not at our prices.
Provenance is the recorded data on previous ownership of an item. So, government issued swords, etc. do not have provenance except by way of government markings. Provenance of officer swords etc. is often false; look out for “by repute”, etc. as it means taking something someone said at face value. We do not play such games. If something has provenance by repute from a credible source, of course we will include that data in the item description. If something is simply sold at auction / to us by repute of an unknown person / unverifiable or untenable source, we will not.
Proof / verification. Sometimes buyers want to see / hear items we sell have sound basis of claim in recognized reference books. Sometimes we will provide that info, sometimes we will not, sometimes we can not. Why will we not sometimes? Because we disagree with source. For example, the alleged reference book “The British Cavalry Sword 1788-1912 by Richard Dellar” has a 1796 pattern heavy cavalry trooper’s sword illustrated and noted in it as being authentic (J J Runkel to Blade, Osborne to scabbard), when we know for a fact that sword is a fake, a reproduction. Do we then sell such fakes for vast profits citing this book as proof of authenticity? No, we damn well do not. And sometimes there are no reference books for certain swords. Sometimes there are scant descriptions in books about certain rarer swords. Sometimes it is just experience. If a sword has age, fits a general historical description and is unlikely to be anything else, then what is it? “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.”
So, we put everything we have to say on item pages. If asked, if we agree with a true reference book, we will provide details of that. But, it is for you to conduct whatever due diligence, certification you want; if you do not trust our expertise and veracity, don’t buy it! If you want a certificate of authenticity from us (on an item you buy from us), no problem; we charge £10 for this (it is basically what you see on the item page printed onto certificate style paper). The fact is, we never remove any sold items from our site; so the truth of what we say and sell is always there for public review.