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Knife (culinary tool)

Knife (culinary tool)

  • Place of origin:

    germany (made)

  • Date:

    1800-1850 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Cloudy agate capped with silver-gilt filigree with a steel blade

  • Museum number:

    1323E/1-1854

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

In the 17th century, sets of matching cutlery were still a novelty, and highly prized. The culture of the day demanded that they ‘should not be merely polished and abundant but also rare and distinct.’ It was the sign of a gentleman that he possessed cutlery made of unusual and valuable materials, and many knives, forks and spoons of this period have handles of agate, ivory, or other precious materials.

These sets were at first restricted to a single knife, fork and spoon, which were carried in a fitted case for the personal use of the owner. It was not until the end of the 17th century that sets of multiple pieces, provided by the host rather than the guest, began to appear. This set was originally described as 17th-century Italian when it was acquired by the Museum in 1854, but it is more likely that it was made later, perhaps not long before it was acquired.

Physical description

Knife with cylindrical tapering handle of cloudy agate and steel blade. The handle has a band of silver-gilt filigree round the base and is capped with a filigree rosette on the top, attached to the tang.

Place of Origin

germany (made)

Date

1800-1850 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Cloudy agate capped with silver-gilt filigree with a steel blade

Marks and inscriptions

A cross.
Cutler's mark.
On blade.

Dimensions

Length: 17.6 cm, Length: 17.6 cm, Width: 1.2 cm maximum width of handle

Descriptive line

Knife with handle of cloudy agate with silver-gilt filigree and steel blade, possibly Germany, 1800-1850.

Materials

Silver-gilt; Agate; Steel

Techniques

Filigree

Categories

Metalwork; Tableware & cutlery

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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