I'm just going to go out on a limb here... Why, pray tell, is there a scabbard? If the flag is attached by knotted string, wouldn't the scabbard be superfluous? Or did Japanese NCO's routinely carry ground down swords and little flags that they could conveniently tie to said swords immediately prior to battle? Just seems like an odd item to survive in that immaculate of condition... The flag that is.