The knife

History of the Knife making trade

The History of the Knife

The knife is the oldest and most basic tool used by the human beings for their survival. Occasionally, it is used as a weapon, and always as a work utensil and for domestic use.

Knife and poniard have different forms: the different functionality generates structural differences between them. The knife is an instrument thought to cut; on the contrary, the poniard is a weapon with a short and pointed blade. The blade is the differentiating element of both instruments.

The knife blade is asymmetrical, with a straight back, a tip and a single edge. This allows a comfortable sliding of the blade in the cutting area and an easy application of the force downwards, because the lacking edge offers a good support for the thumb or forefinger. The blades of the knives have been decorated with notches in the spine, longitudinal grooves, with simple engravings or trimmed with the heel.

On the contrary, the blade of the poniard is symmetrical with a central axis from which two edges start.

We can find blades of poniards decorated with engravings made with burin or punch, perforations or incrustations and tabs of brass.

In both - knife and poniards - the materials and the ornamentation of the handle is usually similar. The most common are composed of two brass tapered ferrules and a cylindrical intermediate piece, sometimes of wood, bone, horn or metal and others, with longitudinal ribs formed by the alternation of several materials, almost always bone and brass.

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