Metalware - Iron


Hewing Ax 

English, 16th/17th c.

Used to square off a log into a beam -- one side is flat to ensure a good surface on the beam. The handle is replaced (obviously -- presumably many times) but it looks old and good. The blade has a beautifully aged surface. Not too many of these have survived.


Details and more photos. 



Small Medieval Tongs 

French, 16th century

A stunning piece of early French ironwork -- the French smiths were considered the best in Europe. Not quite sure of their use: they're too small for pipe tongs, the finger rings are ladies' or children's size, and the best grip is at the tips of the birds' beaks (don't you love those birds?) For tapestry, or needlework? Whatever. Just look at the form and the decoration, and you'll realize you're looking at a top quality piece of late medieval ironwork.


Details and more photos. 



Medieval Bone-Handled Knife and Sheath 

English, 114th/15th c.

We try not to overuse the word "rare" but it is truly justified here. The knife is a fine example of the cutler's art: two slivers of bone riveted on either side of the steel handle with tiny rivets. Its main use would have been for dining; the pointed tip is designed for spearing morsels of meat -- when forks appeared some 2 or 3 centuries later, knife ends were rounded. The sheath shows it was carried by an individual, not provided by the host. From a major English collection; excavated from the Thames foreshore in 1971.


Details and more photos. 


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