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Asian Antiques5218 of 7303Can anyone help identify this piece?PAIR OF LETTER OPENERS ?
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Posted 4 years ago


(155 items)

This tiny little tool is horn handle about 1 inch and blade 1 inch .The handle has grooves in it but I'm not sure what it;s for. It is quaint and I have it in my Asian collection.
Any help identifying and comments appreciated
Cheers Rose

Mystery Solved


  1. Zowie Zowie, 4 years ago
    First look I thought it was a knife still would most probably if you had not said but I do love it. The grooves could they be for the wire.
  2. ATTWOOD ATTWOOD, 4 years ago
    I was reading an article on this site About opium pipes and opium Smoking paraphanalia And thought it maybe for this purpose-What wire do you mean?
  3. Zowie Zowie, 4 years ago
    I have to be honest I really do not know I just reread comment on your knife for some reason I was picturing something to do with a musical tool & wire come to mind. By the way you never know if it is for opium maybe someone can help
  4. BHock45 BHock45, 4 years ago
    I actually think this is a knife. It is part of a carving set. I would say it is a carving knife, my grandmother has one very similar in design. Hers is silver plated with a bone handle and similar engravings. It is from Scotland.
  5. BHock45 BHock45, 4 years ago
    OHhhhh....sorry, I didn't see that part about it being one inch. You may be right on with the opium knife then.
  6. BHock45 BHock45, 4 years ago
    I believe the knife is set on the fire until it is red hot. The tip is then touched to the tar, which produces clean smoke. It is then inhaled. I do not know how I know this......???
  7. ATTWOOD ATTWOOD, 4 years ago
    Thanks BHock... maybe we both read the same thing
    Mine is just a guess.
    Any other ideas.
    REMEMBER 1 inch blade....teeny tiny
  8. Zowie Zowie, 4 years ago
    You know because you must of seen it on a documentary. That's were I seen something similar.
  9. kerry10456 kerry10456, 4 years ago
    I believe you're on to something with that idea, but the usage, in my opinion, would be to slice a chunk off the tar ball ad place in bowl to be smoked. The ridges on the blade are possibly to keep it from sticking to the flat surface of the blade. Just a theroy.
  10. ATTWOOD ATTWOOD, 4 years ago
    thanks for the input guys. I love the supersleuthing.I hop[e we are on the right track.
    The opium history as told in above link tells us opium was very hard to actually prepare for smoking. People would you opium packers to do the work for them and why you always saw them laying down was not cause they were so out of was so not to get a draught on the flame of the pipe.
    A very interesting story and a must read
  11. BHock45 BHock45, 4 years ago
    yes, I must have read about opium dens somewhere along the line. Seems that everything everyone is saying sounds familiar. Interesting!
  12. ATTWOOD ATTWOOD, 4 years ago
    BHock I do think we are getting to the bottom of it!

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