Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

Welcome to the Spencer Collection

knife with sheath
  • unknown Chokwe maker
  • knife with sheath, late 1800s–1914
  • Where object was made: Angola
  • iron, tin, wood, leather, embossing, carving, incising
  • Object Length/Width: a) 20 x 3.5 cm
    Object Length/Width: a) 7 7/8 x 1 3/8 in
    Object Length/Width: b) 15.5 x 9 cm
    Object Length/Width: b) 6 1/8 x 3 9/16 in
  • Gift of Claude D. Brown
  • Not on display
  • 2007.0382.a,b

This is a short knife (2007.0382.a) with a tin and leather sheath (2007.0382.b). The knife has an iron blade with one cutting edge. There is a zigzag incised near the non-cutting edge with a small diamond on the end. The carved wooden handle has two rounded segments with one deep groove and two smaller grooves between them. The grooves are lighter in color. There is a large hole drilled through one segment of the handle and the iron tang is visible. The portion of the handle immediately adjacent to the blade is wrapped in a sheet of silver-colored metal with a narrow band of another metal, possibly brass, over top of it.

The sheath has an undecorated leather back with two small slits. The front is tin, and the edges are folded over the leather edges and nailed down. It is mostly "U" shaped, with a small tail off to one side. There is a band of dots embossed around borders. The center field is divided into decorated panels. There is a vertical rectangle of cross hatching that sits next to a vertical rectangle of scalloped lines. There is a horizontal rectangle with two spirals. The bottom square has raised diamond outlines filled in wtih small dots.