Once upon a time was the Laguiole
This humble farmer’s knife was first created in 1829, in Laguiole, a small mountain village of the Aveyron, in southwestern France. The bee decorating the spring plate would eventually become the prestigious symbol of France’s most celebrated knife.


Cowmen carrying
fresh milk on the Aubrac on their way
to the summer pasture

   

 

The first Laguiole knives were inspired by the Arabo-Hispanic knife, the Navaja. Local men who migrated to Spain in winter as pit-sawyers brought this knife back as souvenirs. Local cutlers and tinkers blended the Navaja with a local knife of the time, the Capouchadou, thus creating what came to be known as the Laguiole.

 

1840 : The first awls appeared to help shepherds pierce the skin of sheep that had bloated from eating too much green grass.
1880 : The corkscrew made its début, in response to the demands of men from northern Aveyron who had gone to Paris to work as waiters in cafés.
The shepherd’s cross which is set in the handle acts as a rosary. The knife was planted upright in the bread with the cross facing front. Shepherds, who spent many months on the high summer grazinAg lands, far from any churches, were thus able to do their daily prayers.


Aubrac peasant around 1905
Laguiole village around 1904

Fairgrounds in one Aubrac village around 1907



A few tales...


The knives of today have a spring-stop that protects the blade upon closing. But when folding his knife, the connaisseur will do so softly,thus respecting both the Aveyronnais proverb, “ressort silencieux vivra vieux” “silent springs make better lives” and the tradition according to which only the head of the household was allowed to snap his blade shut, thus asking the family to clear the table..