This beautifully preserved antique cleaver came to us from Southern Italy near Calabria and one needs only to take a peek at it to recognize it as something well above and beyond the normal excellent quality we associate with the finest vintage cleavers. Regardless of whether its manufacturing origin, there can be no disputing its sheer beauty and utility.
It was made with a somewhat French, birdshead handle that is consistent with older cleavers I've seen in Italy over the years, most of which were made not in any factory but by the local village blacksmith. Its blade, with its pronounced eyelet, is also somewhat suggestive of a zoomorphic form, hand-forged from some thick, very fine carbon steel and is as useful today as it was when it was first forged. In terms of its design, materials, craftsmanship, beauty, performance and especially condition it has EVERYTHING going for it one could hope and more.It's hand-forged blade was expertly ground with a taper toward the cutting edge and a very unusual crown-shaped bolster at the top of its handle, echoed again in brass at the bottom. The handle of this piece is the true star, though, made of some kind of oxhorn scales set between exceptionally large and pronounced solid brass bolsters over a full and tapered tang--a very good sign, indeed. Brass was expertly cast and machined, also of the very highest quality, the likes of which is no longer available on the modern market. Amazingly, there are NO cracks or other problems of any kind. Most spectacular about it, though, is the seamless integration of its purely ornamental craftsmanship with the utilitarian, a reflection, perhaps, of the integral role that a nearly-spiritual respect for work played in the daily lives of our agrarian past--a VERY Italian trait. This profound respect was often found expressed in the construction of the tools used to accomplish work, especially in the trades, to which butchers once belonged, and as such, the piece is almost as much folk art as mere craftsmanship in that respect, I think. Comes in a nice medium size for home or professional chef to use, measuring 12.75" long, 9.5" along its edge and weighing in at a very impressive 31.2 ounces. In every respect a truly great find for chef or folk-art lover and an instant heirloom for user and collector alike. Our store's inventory is searchable using the search field or may be browsed by clicking on categories, with each option found on the left side of the store's homepage.
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The item "FINE Antique Italian Chef's XL Brass-Bolstered Meat Cleaver/Butcher Knife withHorn" is in sale since Wednesday, December 19, 2018. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Kitchen & Home\Kitchenware\Utensils\Cutlery". The seller is "ralph1396" and is located in Los Angeles, California. This item can be shipped worldwide.