By: Anssi Ruusuvuori
For a Finn, the puukko is the most important tool and at the same time the most feared weapon. You could almost say the puukko has the same importance for a Finn as the samurai sword has for the Japanese. It is a 2,000-year-old mystical weapon that has been used for centuries with the same conviction and dexterity during times of peace and war. This comprehensive resource on the Finnish puukko is the only one available and covers the history and the various types by using extensive photos of examples. Anssi Ruusuvuori has reprocessed the history of this remarkable knife type in a form unique up to now. He deals with technical and design aspects of the puukko and guides the reader through the history of this legendary tool and weapon from the Viking era up to the present. He reports about the great master smiths of industrialization in the late 19th century and about rediscovering the puukko in the recent past. This book's initial focus is on the puukko’s technology and history. In the second section, the author introduces the different puukko types according to their materials and construction. Thereafter are presented the multiple regional types and special puukkos, which are essential to know about as a collector and knife enthusiast. This book provides a comprehensive overview with respect to the topic “puukko” and transfers a rich treasure of knowledge. During its long history, the puukko was used for a great diversity of tasks, such as the production of ladles and other household tools; the carving of ornaments; scratching ice off cart wheels; cutting food; gutting and skinning of game, fish, or livestock; climbing out of an ice hole back to firm ground; and magic rituals (to protect children from evil spirits, to pray for a good harvest, and so on). It was used for self-defense and for duels. The main source of material for this book is the puukko collections of Finnish museums and private collectors. The greater part of researched knives is from the National Museum of Finland. Additional material was gathered from the Kauhava Puukko Museum, the Peura Museum, the Turku Regional Museum, the Aboa Vetus et Ars Nova Museum, the Ostrobothnian Museum, the Museum of Crime, and various private collections.
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