History of Knife Sharpening

November 10, 2014

As long as humans have used knives, we’ve needed ways to sharpen them. According to a study done by the University of Colorado at Boulder, prehistoric people developed a method of sharpening tools and stone knives at least 75,000 years ago.

Western style knife-sharpening, however, can be directly traced back to the “moletas” of Northern Italy. The moletas were knife-grinders who traveled from village to village offering their sharpening services. They originated in the valley of Val Rendena in Italy`s Dolomite Alps, and the first one landed in America in 1886. Within 3 decades hundreds more had joined him.

Unfortunately, the moletas in America fought over knife-grinding territories just like they had in Italy, and in 1930 the Knife Grinders Association was founded in order to settle these disputes.

Almost every big city in America had at least one moleta. Traditionally, the moleta wore a floppy hat and could be found on the street corner, sharpening knives on a pedal-operated grinding wheel mounted in a wheelbarrow.

monumento al Moleta - Pinzolo Italy.jpgMonumento al Moleta - Pinzolo Italy

By 1910, the moletas had become successful enough to own horse-drawn carts and by 1930 they were carrying their sharpening supplies in trucks.

Today, moletas still exist but people have also learned how to sharpen their knives themselves. With easy-to-use systems like Lansky’s own controlled-angle sharpening system, everyone can become a bit of a moleta. At the very least, everyone can have an extremely sharp knife.

 

Also see:

 

Category: General

0 Comments

You must be logged in to leave a reply.

Login

Explore


December 13, 2021

Five Great Gifts for the Lansky Fan in Your Life

Looking for a gift for the chef, hunter or camper in your life this holiday season? We’ve got you covered. From stocking stuffer…


October 26, 2021

How to Choose a Knife for Everyday Carry

When it comes to choosing an Everyday Carry (EDC) pocket knife, the kind you decide to buy will ultimately be based on how you’l…


August 16, 2021

How to Use the BladeMedic Knife Sharpener

The BladeMedic Knife Sharpener is the first responder for field repairs on all types of knife blades. It’s like having an entire…


June 28, 2021

6 Sharpening Abrasives You Should Know

There are various sharpening abrasives available today and they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. Which abrasive y…


April 7, 2021

How to Use the C-Clip Combo

C-Clip Ceramic Rod Knife Sharpener 1. Place the base on a solid, flat surface at a comfortable height. •  Insert the rods al…