Butcher knife

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A native butcher knife from the Philippines

A butcher knife or butcher's knife is a knife designed and used primarily for the butchering or dressing of animal carcasses.

Use[edit]

Today, the butcher knife is used throughout the world in the meat processing trade. The heftier blade works well for splitting, stripping and cutting meat. Other similar meat-cutting knives include the carving knife and the cleaver. The carving knife is usually designed for slicing thin cuts of meat and often has a blunt or rounded point, with a scalloped or Granton blade to improve separation of sliced cuts of meat. The cleaver is similar to the butcher's knife, but has a lighter and thinner blade for precision cutting.

History[edit]

Old carving knife and carving forks, non-stainless steel. Stag handles. Note folding fork guards.

From the late 18th century to the mid-1840s, the butcher knife was a key tool for mountain men. Simple, useful and cheap to produce, they were used for everything from skinning beaver, cutting food, self-defense, and scalping. During this time, John Wilson, of Sheffield, England, was a major exporter of this type of knife to the Americans.[1] These knives can be identified by brand markings and the stamp I. Wilson.[2] Heavy cleavers were traditionally hung up on a hook for ease of access.

References[edit]

  1. ^ O. Ned Eddins. "Traders and Trappers of Beaver Pelts". thefurtrapper.com. Archived from the original on 2010-03-24.
  2. ^ "Sheffield and Beeley Wood Steel Works" (PDF). The Portland Advertiser. Vol. 1, no. 60. March 11, 1831. p. 4 – via ScandinavianMountainMen.se.