Whetstone Case or "Coffin"

Whetstone Case

Case for carrying a whetstone used by the farmer to sharpen his scythe.

This object is known as "Le gonvier" or "coffin" in French, and would have been worn on the belt. It was filled with water and grass and the sharpening stone.


The stone needed to be kept wet to loosen the grain, provide lubrication and and improve the cutting action. Farmers would pause frequently in the fields to hone the edges of their Sythes -- which had to be razer sharp to work well.

There is slight damage to the bottom of this one. There was originally a pointed tip at the base which has broke off. (This was so that it could be inserted into the ground)


Illustration: Engraving with an image of a Zurich farmer who wears a "Coffin"on his belt


Interesting internet page with more information about the Gonvier or Coffin.


Link: Modern day Whetstone Holders

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