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Roman "Swiss Army Knife": GR.1.1991

An image of Compound utensil

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 21

Titles

Roman "Swiss Army Knife"

Entities

Categories

Description

Eating implement, folding, with three-pronged fork, spatula, pick, spike and knife.

As well as a knife, spoon, and fork, this implement provides a spike, spatula and small pick. The spike might have helped in extracting the meat from snails, and the spatula in poking sauce out of narrow-necked bottles: the pick could have served as a tooth-pick. While many less elaborate folding knives survive in bronze, this one’s complexity and the fact that it is made of silver suggest it is a luxury item, perhaps a useful gadget for a wealthy traveller.

Measurements and weight

Height: 88 mm
Width: 155 mm

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1990)

Dating

Middle Roman
201 AD - 300 AD

Components of the work

Knife composed of iron

Materials used in production

Silver

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: GR.1.1991
Primary reference Number: 70534
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Thursday 29 February 2024 Last processed: Thursday 29 February 2024

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Antiquities

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Roman "Swiss Army Knife"" Web page available at: https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/70534 Accessed: 2024-06-22 13:48:34

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{{cite web|url=https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/70534 |title=Roman "Swiss Army Knife" |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-06-22 13:48:34|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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