Scrivener’s Knife, handle of agate and silver

Scrivener’s Knife, handle of agate and silver

Scrivener's Knife

Handle of agate and silver, steel blade
North-west Europe, 1650-1700
Fitzhenry gift

A scrivener was a professional penman or scribe who transcribed court records and copied documents. Scriveners used knives such as this to cut and shape goose feathers into writing quills. Most knives had a spike on the end of the handle for splitting the nib. The word penknife comes from this use.