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The $5,000 Samurai Sword On Pawn Stars That Hid A Secret

One of Corey Harrison's best deals on "Pawn Stars" came relatively early in the show's run. That time, he bought a samurai sword — the boys can't resist samurai swords, as Chumlee revealed in an exclusive interview – that ended up being worth almost $10,000 more than what he paid for it. The clip is available to watch on YouTube.

It all started when a seller David brought a 15th-century samurai sword into the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop. David, an eccentric attorney, repeatedly pronounced the normally silent "w" in sword and said he was selling the item because every time his wife got mad at him, she looked at it. He received the sword as payment for some legal work that he did and was looking to flip it for $5,000.

Corey wanted to prove that he deserved to be a co-owner of the shop, and he was determined to make a good deal that impressed Rick and the Old Man. The problem was, samurai sword expert Mike Yamasaki was out of town and wasn't available to appraise the weapon. So Corey took a risk. He negotiated David down to $1,500 and bought the sword without giving it a full inspection. He knew it was good, but he wasn't sure how good.

The blade revealed its secret value

Later, once Mike Yamasaki was back in Vegas, he came into the shop to take a look at Corey's sword, and he had some great news for him.

Yamasaki removed the handle to reveal the secret markings on the blade that revealed its worth. The sword was a historic Yasutsugu sword, forged by a swordsmith who didn't make swords for the open market, rather making them directly for samurai. As it turned out, this sword belonged to a real high-level samurai, and wasn't just authentic but also very rare. It bore the crest of the ruling Tokugawa family, and unauthorized use of the weapon was a crime punishable by death.

Mike said that in its present condition, with stains and wear and tear, the sword was worth between $5,000 and $6,000; Corey was already coming out well ahead in his deal. And if Corey gave Mike money to get the sword restored, it would be worth even more. Corey agreed.

Mike came back sometime later with the restored sword, which he unsheathed for the three generations of Harrisons and Chumlee. They were all impressed with its beauty and deadliness, but the Old Man got down to brass tacks, asking, "Did my idiot grandson make any money offa this?"

Corey paid $1,500 for it, and the restoration cost $3,300. Mike, meanwhile, said the restored sword was worth $15,000. That "idiot grandson" was actually looking like a genius businessman when it was all said and done.