Kyo-Yumi bows are one of Japan’s representative bows and are highly trusted by archery enthusiasts. Every single step of the process is a challenge, and a sense of tension is always in the air in the workshop. From the cutting of the bamboo to the finishing process, there are six major processes involved in the creation of a Kyo-yumi. The most spectacular of these processes is the shooting. It takes only 15 minutes for the glue to set and the bow is warped. There are no blueprints for the entire process, including shooting, and all the attention is focused on bow making, relying on the experience as all bamboos are in different conditions. The characteristic of Kyo-Yumi bows is that, compared to bows made in other prefectures, the curve part where the bow is held is smaller, creating a beautiful curve when the arrow is released. This balance is considered optimal for releasing the arrow with great speeds and has attracted many archers.
Shibata Kanjuro Bow Shop
Today, Shibata Kanjuro bow shop is the only bow store that continues to make Kyoto bows. The origin of the Kyoto bow dates back to the Warring States period in 1534. The first head of the family served the Satsuma clan as an archer, and from there he moved to Kyoto to serve the Tokugawa clan, where he was given the title of “Onyumishi” (royal bow manufacturer and archer). His name spread so widely that there is a rumour that the bow was used by Nobunaga Oda against the forces of Mitsuhide Akechi in the Honnoji Incident was the Kanjuro Shibata’s bow. In 1889, Kanjuro Shibata was appointed by the Imperial Household Agency, and he also produced the sacred treasures for the “Shikinen Sengu” ceremony held every 20 years at the Ise Jingu Shrine. Today, the 21st generation of the Kanjuro family continues preserve the name of the Kanjuro, and in 2013, 59 Azusa Yumi bows were delivered to the shrine.
All products made at Kanjuro Shibata Bow Shop are made of natural materials and contain no artificial materials. Because everything is done by hand, it takes a little time, but we create the highest quality products that are unique in the world.
This craft will be shipped directly to the customer, whether in Japan or overseas by its craftsmen. Due to this delivery service, we will charge the cost of travel and accommodation fee of the craftsman in addition to the price of the Kyoto-bow. The craftsman will visit the customer directly to assemble the bow and explain how to use it. It is the belief of Mr. Kanjuro Shibata, the 21st head of the company, to deliver the craft to the customer by himself, and he values the connection that comes from meeting his client in a person.
Please allow one year to one year and six months from the time of your order to be delivered.
Please note that there may be unavoidable delays in delivery due to material shortages or delays in the crafting process.
Kanjuro Shibata Profile
Only one bow store in Kyoto, “Kanjuro Shibata Bow Shop.
The owner has been in the business for about 40 years and is the 21st generation to preserve the name “Kanjuro”.
We craft Kyoto bows that take advantage of the characteristics of Kyoto’s madake bamboo, which has distinct seasons of spring, summer, fall, and winter, in the bow’s performance.
In 2013, we delivered 59 Azusa Yumi bows to Ise Jingu Shrine and received in audience by His Majesty the Emperor at the Imperial Palace.
This bow was used as a ninja’s tool during the Warring States period, and as a weapon to be thrown into the palace. This bow was made based on the original model of the old days with a special mold and elegance appearance and is also used to ward off demons and pray for good health and safety in the home.
Ya-byobu, 24 Setsumei Conquered Arrows
Ya-byobu is a type of interior decoration in which arrows are placed in a wooden frame with the shape of a folding screen. It can be set up unfolded like a folding screen, or it can be folded. In the Edo period (1603-1867), it was used in the homes of warriors as a bow case and it allowed them to take out the bow immediately when their enemy came to attack them.
Hama-yumi (a bow to drive away demons)
The “Hama-yumi” is meant to drive away demons and purify the mind. In the past, it was used as a medal of honor for Prince Oda Nobunaga, who exterminated the Japanese chimera of Minamoto no Yorimasa* (chimera nue is a creature from long ago), and is the highest quality of the four classes of “bow,” “horse,” “sword,” and “spear. It is used to celebrate boys’ festivals, birthday celebrations, the New Year, new houses, etc.
Utsubodai, 48 Setsumei Conqueror Arrows
Utsubodai is a type of decorative bow in which arrows are set along a wooden frame and two bows can be displayed there. Utsubo means “strong and flexible.
Although it is a type of decorative bow, it is a gem that can actually be used, so please be careful when you use it.
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