Share your favorites on Show & Tell

Shakespeare Letter Opener

In Office > Letter Openers > Show & Tell.
Letter Openers13 of 133Brass letter opener- WaterlooLetter opener
8
Love it
0
Like it

TreyTrey loves this.
Lisaanncarter49Lisaanncarter49 loves this.
jscott0363jscott0363 loves this.
pw-collectorpw-collector loves this.
fortapachefortapache loves this.
WatchsearcherWatchsearcher loves this.
NewfldNewfld loves this.
See 6 more
Add to collection

    Please create an account, or Log in here

    If you don't have an account, create one here.


    Create a Show & TellReport as inappropriate


    Posted 2 years ago

    LaurenRedm…
    (103 items)

    This is the latest object from my last visit to my local charity shop- a Shakespeare letter opener! It caught my eye lying at the bottom of a g;lass cabinet filled with glassware and at first at a glance I thought the figure on top was Admiral Nelson(which would be cool too!)- it was only when reading the handle I realised it was Shakespeare which is also great I think!
    I'm not sure why he would be placed on the top of a brass letter opener, but I find it a rather nice and unusual touch and I've certainly never seen anything like it before. The figure of Shakespeare and the blade itself was filthy but after taking it home and cleaning it up a great deal I realised there is actually a surprising amount of detail in it which makes it nicer! There's no marks or stamps on it anywhere which makes me wonder just how old it is, or is it a rare or one off piece, not that that matters either I just like the idea of a homage to Shakespeare in the form of a rather unusual little object.
    Cost €6 (£5.38/$6.83)

    logo
    Letter Openers
    See all
    VINTAGE CELLULOID DIP PEN PENCIL ERASER INKWELL LETTER OPENER SET CALLIGRAPHY
    VINTAGE CELLULOID DIP PEN PENCIL ER...
    $15
    VINTAGE GEORG JENSEN DENMARK STERLING SILVER  LETTER OPENER 255 GRAPES
    VINTAGE GEORG JENSEN DENMARK STERLI...
    $45
    ANTIQUE FLEUR DE LEYS DIP PEN SEAL LETTER OPENER BOXED SET CALLIGRAPHY AW FABER
    ANTIQUE FLEUR DE LEYS DIP PEN SEAL ...
    $36
    Antique Roycroft Hammered Copper Letter Opener 9 1/2
    Antique Roycroft Hammered Copper Le...
    $95
    logo
    VINTAGE CELLULOID DIP PEN PENCIL ERASER INKWELL LETTER OPENER SET CALLIGRAPHY
    VINTAGE CELLULOID DIP PEN PENCIL ER...
    $15
    See all

    Comments

    1. Newfld Newfld, 2 years ago
      This is so beautiful and unique, I love the sculpted Shakespeare where he is holding his writing, and the scroll handle is lovely - super find, wish I had one!
    2. LaurenRedmond LaurenRedmond, 2 years ago
      Thanks Newfld- ya I think the handle is really nice too! :)
    3. LaurenRedmond LaurenRedmond, 2 years ago
      Thanks Broochman!
    4. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 2 years ago
      I read an article a while back that talked about differences in letter openers and a similar tool which was made for slicing the folded edges of books apart back when books were made in such a way that pages needed to be sliced apart.
      Since this is Shakespeare on the handle, I think you should research “paper cutters” (and I’m not totally sure that was the term the article used).
      The printed word of a book would make more sense with this object than a letter opener.

      The author of the article I read stated that the two objects are frequently misidentified/confused with each other.
    5. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 2 years ago
      Lauren, “paper knife” is the term you should look up.
      Paper knives are longer and sharper than letter openers. Your object does indeed seem fairly long.

      It took this aging brain a few minutes to bring that to the surface!! It just takes a little bit longer these days...
    6. LaurenRedmond LaurenRedmond, 2 years ago
      Thanks Watchsearcher for that information and I think you might be right, it very well could be an unusual example of a paper knife which I have heard of before I just never really knew what one was,
    7. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 2 years ago
      The fact that Shakespeare is actually holding a book is very telling as to the purpose of the item; I doubt that it was just an incidental design element to have the book in his hand.

      Wouldn’t it be wonderful to know the history of this item? Who used it? What books did it help produce?

      A very nice find for you. :-D
    8. LaurenRedmond LaurenRedmond, 2 years ago
      My thoughts exactly Watchsearcher! ;)
    9. Ben Ben, 2 years ago
      Hi Watchsearcher.
      We published an article on paper knives and similar pieces here:
      https://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/the-mystery-of-the-phantom-page-turner/
    10. Watchsearcher Watchsearcher, 2 years ago
      Ben, thank you!! That’s exactly what I read!
      It was a fascinating article. Thank you!

    Want to post a comment?

    Create an account or login in order to post a comment.