Knives from the 1700's, 1600's and earlier with this blade pattern disproves that theory. In addition, sometime before the 11th century, the Vikings had a fixed blade called the Seax or Sax that had a straight edge and a straight tapering toward a point that looks like the present day interpretations of the Wharncliffe.This is a 1700's small French pocket knife that is 5 1/4" overall with a 2 7/16" Warhncliffe style blade. 8 ounces or 24 grams. The hand forged blade is 1/16 thick and tapers towards the tip with a very slight grind to the top front swedge. The blade shows light grind marks on the front blade edge and naturally occurring random patterns typical of hand forged 1700s steel, with patches of dark aged patina that take over 100+ years to form, and authenticates the age. The hand forged Wharncliffe style blade has a prominent Maker's marks that dates to the 1700's.
Note that 18th century cutler's marks are sometimes letters of a Trade mark that are often mistaken or a Maker's name; or a random assortment of symbols and letters such as Touch marks. Large style letters all date to before around 1815, when the new die reducing machines allowed Maker hot stamps to be made with much smaller letters.Knives with any early Maker Mark are very rare, and values range from high to very high. I could not identify this Maker's mark and it does not appear in the most widely known knife references; probably as this knife is of French manufacture, and almost all of the published materials on 18th c. Knives refer to Sheffield markings.
Also note that back springs were first introduced around 1725, and begun to enter general use around 1750; yet friction knives continued to be made throughout the 1700s. Thus it is difficult to date knives from this period; but undoubtedly dates to the 1750 to 1800 period.The unusual handle design is round at the blade end, and from the top and bottom views, appears to be a round tube shape. However, in the side views, the handle flares from 5/16" tall to 1/2" at the pommel end. The handle is made from a single piece of U shaped wood that is split down the middle and covered with a brass veneer. The blade end shows the ricasso fits between the two pieces of the inside ends of the wooden frame, and is secured by the brass outer cover with an Iron pin that is peened on both sides that not only secures the blade, but ads friction that creates resistance, but allows the blade to stay firmly in both the closed and open positions. The front top edge of the brass cover acts as the blade stop.
The inside slot shows the inside of the brass cover, and the pommel end of the inside wooden frame flares as does the outside brass covering. The end of the wood frame slopes at a 45 degree angle for about 1/2 from the end to create a wooden grove and stop for the end of the blade when closed. The pommel end is a simple piece of brass that is secured with 2 small Iron nails.The front and rear of the brass handle have hand engraved double border panels with a scroll pattern decoration, and a center panel in French renaissance pattern engraving. This 1700's unusual and early pocket knife pattern would be a fine addition to any hand made knife collection, 1700s collection, Folk Art, pocket knife, French, smalls, Object D' Art collection or use as a letter opener, desk accessory or conversation piece.
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Due to a myriad of International and U. DO NOT DUPLICATE OR COPY! The item "FINE RARE UNUSUAL 1700s SMALL MAKER MARKED HANDMADE FRENCH POCKET KNIFE" is in sale since Saturday, August 24, 2019. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Knives, Swords & Blades\Collectible Folding Knives\Vintage Folding Knives\Custom & Handmade".
The seller is "1knifeguy1" and is located in Fairfield, California. This item can be shipped to United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Denmark, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Czech republic, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia, Australia, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia, China, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Bahamas, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Norway, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Croatia, Malaysia, Colombia, Costa rica, Panama, Trinidad and tobago, Guatemala, Honduras, Oman, Uruguay.