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Re: [medievalsawdust] Shave horses

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  • Tom Rettie
    ... The earliest documentary evidence for a shaving horse that I m aware of is Georgius Agricola s De Re Metallica ((1556), which clearly illustrates a man
    Message 1 of 17 , Jul 3, 2003
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      >Way back in March, we had a discussion on shave horses, and how far
      >back they can be documented. Are there any updates to the quest? I
      >have found several books on the history of hand tools and such, and
      >some mention shave horses, but not their evolution. To me, they seem
      >to be the precursor to our modern work benches. Any input?

      The earliest documentary evidence for a shaving horse that I'm aware of is
      Georgius Agricola's "De Re Metallica" ((1556), which clearly illustrates a
      man shaving down "fuzz sticks" for use in a mine. This is the "continental"
      version where the dumbhead comes up through the center of the bench. The
      "English" style seems to come later.

      I would resist the jump that, because of their utility, they must have had
      them at a much earlier date. There are a host of "traditional" brakes for
      holding pieces that require little more than a few tree branches. The 15th
      c. Bedford Book of Hours shows a gentleman edge-planing a panel that is
      wedged into notches in some timbers to hold it steady. In the Saint Louis
      Psalter (ca. 1200) Noah is shaping a timber that appears to be wedged in a
      brake of some sort. A late 13th century mosaic shows two sawyers ripping a
      board that one of the sawyers braces with his foot against a brake. There's
      an excellent illustration in a 1531 woodcut of a carver's bench, which
      looks very much like the frame for a pole lathe, but instead of turning the
      piece (a statue) it appears to rotate freely so the carver can work from
      any angle.

      If anyone finds an earlier shaving horse, I'd love to hear about it.

      Hope that helps.

      Tom R.

      ------------------------------------------------
      Tom Rettie tom@...
      http://www.his.com/~tom/index.html
    • Scott Lane
      ... Hey! NOBODY S shaving MY horse! Aodhfin
      Message 2 of 17 , Jul 3, 2003
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        > >Way back in March, we had a discussion on shave horses, and how far

        Hey! NOBODY'S shaving MY horse!

        Aodhfin
      • Tim Bray
        ... I doubt it. Modern-looking workbenches appeared in the 16th century, and are clearly just an evolutionary step (vises) from the simpler tables with dogs
        Message 3 of 17 , Jul 3, 2003
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          >To me, they seem
          >to be the precursor to our modern work benches.

          I doubt it. Modern-looking workbenches appeared in the 16th century, and
          are clearly just an evolutionary step (vises) from the simpler tables with
          dogs and holdfasts that are seen in the 15th c. illuminations and
          paintings. Those are in turn very similar to Roman benches - just a sturdy
          four-legged table with holes for dogs.

          "The Workbench Book" by Scott Landis (Taunton Press) has some examples of
          these.

          Shave horses seem like a more specialized tool and probably developed
          independently from workbenches.

          >Jessimond - who longs to have a shave horse & pole lathe of her own...

          Colin - who longs to have a big sturdy workbench of his own...


          Albion Works
          Furniture and Accessories
          For the Medievalist!
          www.albionworks.net
          www.albionworks.com
        • James Winkler
          Awwww... yer no fun!!! Maybe something in a nice poodle cut ??? Charlie 4.5 fingers (the pin s out now... two more weeks to make sure the tendon s
          Message 4 of 17 , Jul 3, 2003
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            Awwww...  yer' no fun!!!  Maybe something in a nice 'poodle cut'??? 
             
            Charlie '4.5 fingers'  (the pin's out now...  two more weeks to make sure the tendon's connected... sigh...)


            > >Way back in March, we had a discussion on shave horses, and how far

                     Hey!  NOBODY'S shaving MY horse!

            Aodhfin

          • Alessandro dEste
            ... cut ??? ... make sure the tendon s connected... sigh...) ... Its still to late for Crown tho Chas. I had so much looked forwards to seeing you become
            Message 5 of 17 , Jul 5, 2003
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              --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "James Winkler"
              <jrwinkler@m...> wrote:
              > Awwww... yer' no fun!!! Maybe something in a nice 'poodle
              cut'???
              >
              > Charlie '4.5 fingers' (the pin's out now... two more weeks to
              make sure the tendon's connected... sigh...)
              >

              Its still to late for Crown tho Chas. I had so much looked forwards
              to seeing you become King...
              IYS
              Alessandro
            • James Winkler
              Tee-hee. just keep that thought for another 2.5 to 3 years. I ll be gearing up around then. seems that I have this little gig coming up that will preclude me
              Message 6 of 17 , Jul 6, 2003
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                Tee-hee… just keep that thought for another 2.5 to 3 years…  I'll be gearing up around then… seems that I have this little gig coming up that will preclude me fighting Crown's for a while… might be a good thing, maybe I can work in my shop without fear of serious bodily injury for a while  (I was reminded a couple of days ago that 4 days before the previous crown I poured a ladle full of molten pewter over my right hand… luckily, it was covered with soapstone dust so the pewter just rolled off before I got any burns…  but I think that was a 'warning shot' that should have been heeded…  'Charles shouldn't fight Crown Tourneys!!!"…  but… what the heck… )
                 
                Chas.
                 
                 
                --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "James Winkler"
                <jrwinkler@m...> wrote:
                > Awwww...  yer' no fun!!!  Maybe something in a nice
                'poodle
                cut'??? 
                >
                > Charlie '4.5 fingers'  (the
                pin's out now...  two more weeks to
                make sure the tendon's connected... sigh...)
                >

                Its still to late for Crown tho Chas. I had so much looked forwards
                to seeing you become King...
                IYS
                Alessandro
              • Wolfram Troeder
                Hello, as I was looking through my books for something completly different I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse. I put it in the photos section. Tassilo
                Message 7 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                  Hello,
                  as I was looking through my books for something completly different
                  I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse. I put it in the photos
                  section.

                  Tassilo

                  --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, Tom Rettie <tom@h...> wrote:
                  > >Way back in March, we had a discussion on shave horses, and how
                  far
                  > >back they can be documented. Are there any updates to the
                  quest? I
                  > >have found several books on the history of hand tools and such,
                  and
                  > >some mention shave horses, but not their evolution. To me, they
                  seem
                  > >to be the precursor to our modern work benches. Any input?
                  >
                  > The earliest documentary evidence for a shaving horse that I'm
                  aware of is
                  > Georgius Agricola's "De Re Metallica" ((1556), which clearly
                  illustrates a
                  > man shaving down "fuzz sticks" for use in a mine. This is
                  the "continental"
                  > version where the dumbhead comes up through the center of the
                  bench. The
                  > "English" style seems to come later.
                  >
                  > I would resist the jump that, because of their utility, they must
                  have had
                  > them at a much earlier date. There are a host of "traditional"
                  brakes for
                  > holding pieces that require little more than a few tree branches.
                  The 15th
                  > c. Bedford Book of Hours shows a gentleman edge-planing a panel
                  that is
                  > wedged into notches in some timbers to hold it steady. In the
                  Saint Louis
                  > Psalter (ca. 1200) Noah is shaping a timber that appears to be
                  wedged in a
                  > brake of some sort. A late 13th century mosaic shows two sawyers
                  ripping a
                  > board that one of the sawyers braces with his foot against a
                  brake. There's
                  > an excellent illustration in a 1531 woodcut of a carver's bench,
                  which
                  > looks very much like the frame for a pole lathe, but instead of
                  turning the
                  > piece (a statue) it appears to rotate freely so the carver can
                  work from
                  > any angle.
                  >
                  > If anyone finds an earlier shaving horse, I'd love to hear about
                  it.
                  >
                  > Hope that helps.
                  >
                  > Tom R.
                  >
                  > ------------------------------------------------
                  > Tom Rettie tom@h...
                  > http://www.his.com/~tom/index.html
                • Joseph Hayes
                  ... What book is that from? Ulrich __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Free Pop-Up Blocker - Get it now http://companion.yahoo.com/
                  Message 8 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                    --- Wolfram Troeder <Rabennest@...> wrote:
                    > as I was looking through my books for something completly different
                    > I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse.

                    What book is that from?

                    Ulrich


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                  • kjworz@comcast.net
                    What is that object by the left butt-cheek of that white-cooper? Is that a tool?
                    Message 9 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                      What is that object by the left butt-cheek of that white-cooper? Is that a tool?
                      >
                      > --- Wolfram Troeder <Rabennest@...> wrote:
                      > > as I was looking through my books for something completly different
                      > > I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse.
                      >
                      > What book is that from?
                      >
                      > Ulrich
                      >
                      >
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                    • Lord Alessandro dEste
                      ... that a tool? I took the pic and blew it up. To me and I could be wrong. It looks to be some type of clamping device . On line with a sewing pony. Bear
                      Message 10 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                        --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, kjworz@c... wrote:
                        > What is that object by the left butt-cheek of that white-cooper? Is
                        that a tool?


                        I took the pic and blew it up. To me and I could be wrong. It looks to
                        be some type of clamping device . On line with a sewing pony.
                        Bear
                      • C N Schwartz
                        Darn. I thought it might be a froe. It looks like mine. I have brought THAT froe to Pennsic. It worked great on that crappy firewood. ... From: Lord
                        Message 11 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                          Darn. I thought it might be a froe. It looks like mine.

                          I have brought THAT froe to Pennsic. It worked great on that crappy
                          firewood.


                          -----Original Message-----
                          From: Lord Alessandro dEste [mailto:avalonbear@...]


                          --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, kjworz@c... wrote:
                          > What is that object by the left butt-cheek of that white-cooper? Is
                          that a tool?


                          I took the pic and blew it up. To me and I could be wrong. It looks to
                          be some type of clamping device . On line with a sewing pony.
                          Bear
                        • Wolfram Troeder
                          From the Mendelsche Hausbuch , Nürnberg, 1485 Tassilo ... -- NEU FÜR ALLE - GMX MediaCenter - für Fotos, Musik, Dateien... Fotoalbum, File Sharing, MMS,
                          Message 12 of 17 , Nov 25, 2003
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                            From the "Mendelsche Hausbuch", Nürnberg, 1485

                            Tassilo
                            >
                            > --- Wolfram Troeder <Rabennest@...> wrote:
                            > > as I was looking through my books for something completly different
                            > > I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse.
                            >
                            > What book is that from?
                            >
                            > Ulrich
                            >
                            >
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                          • Wolfram Troeder
                            It is a chop block? Hauklotz for wood chopping and a chopping knife? a Gertel or Hippe . It chops smaller than an axe. Tassilo ... -- GMX
                            Message 13 of 17 , Nov 26, 2003
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                              It is a chop block? "Hauklotz" for wood chopping and a chopping knife? a
                              "Gertel" or "Hippe". It chops smaller than an axe.

                              Tassilo

                              > What is that object by the left butt-cheek of that white-cooper? Is that
                              > a tool?
                              > >
                              > > --- Wolfram Troeder <Rabennest@...> wrote:
                              > > > as I was looking through my books for something completly different
                              > > > I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse.
                              > >
                              > > What book is that from?
                              > >
                              > > Ulrich
                              > >
                              > >
                              > > __________________________________
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                              > >
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                              >
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                            • Lord Alessandro dEste
                              ... I can see that as what it could be but why two blades? Sandro
                              Message 14 of 17 , Nov 26, 2003
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                                --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Wolfram Troeder"
                                <Rabennest@g...> wrote:
                                > It is a chop block? "Hauklotz" for wood chopping and a chopping knife? a
                                > "Gertel" or "Hippe". It chops smaller than an axe.
                                >
                                > Tassilo

                                I can see that as what it could be but why two blades?
                                Sandro
                              • Wolfram Troeder
                                Hi, thats not two blades but two upper edges of one blade. The artist just did not draw the line on the edge between the two edges. Is that clear? On second
                                Message 15 of 17 , Nov 26, 2003
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                                  Hi,
                                  thats not two blades but two upper edges of one blade. The artist just did
                                  not draw the line on the edge between the two edges. Is that clear? On second
                                  reading not even for me.
                                  Ok, I saw the whole pic. It is a Gertel and it has only one blade. It is
                                  made for chopping/splitting so the upper part of the blade (the back?) is broad.
                                  In cut it is like a V. The artist tried to paint that, but forgot one line.
                                  If you look beyond the stain, the line of the "second blade" merges with the
                                  "first blade", so it is actually just one blade. Better?

                                  Tassilo
                                  > --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Wolfram Troeder"
                                  > <Rabennest@g...> wrote:
                                  > > It is a chop block? "Hauklotz" for wood chopping and a chopping knife? a
                                  > > "Gertel" or "Hippe". It chops smaller than an axe.
                                  > >
                                  > > Tassilo
                                  >
                                  > I can see that as what it could be but why two blades?
                                  > Sandro
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
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                                  >
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                                  >
                                  >

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                                • Tom Rettie
                                  ... photos ... Good catch. That prompted me to go take a closer look at Das Hausbuch der Mendelschen Zwölfbrüderstiftung in Nürnberg, and I noticed another
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Nov 27, 2003
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                                    --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Wolfram Troeder"
                                    <Rabennest@g...> wrote:
                                    > I found a 1485 drawing with a shaving horse. I put it in the
                                    photos
                                    > section.

                                    Good catch. That prompted me to go take a closer look at Das
                                    Hausbuch der Mendelschen Zwölfbrüderstiftung in Nürnberg,
                                    and I noticed another cooper with just the hint of what might be a
                                    shaving horse in the background (1515):

                                    http://mailbox.univie.ac.at/~kochr3/mendel/094.jpg

                                    There's also an interesting brake used by an armourer(?), a
                                    similar tool that uses dogs instead of a foot vice:

                                    http://mailbox.univie.ac.at/~kochr3/mendel/060.jpg

                                    Tom R.
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