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Paper Details

Knife And Bursa's Knife Brand

Gültekin ERDAL


Today, to live crafts is like a miracle when the serial and fabricated products increase rapidly. New products that come with improving technology, has wiped out many concepts in our lives. Dozens of professions such as tinsmith, copper, feltmaking, wicker, blacksmithing, fragrance-making, spoon-making, ropery, stonework and pottery have been succumbed to technology. At the same time, although it is known to contain cultural values of our nation, all of these professions have not been prevented to lose. Perhaps the biggest factor is that people no longer need to this product. However, it is not different in the traditional occupations which they are needed by the people even though their consumptions are increased.  Turkish culture is virtually rich and colorful. An unrecorded handcraft always exists in almost every part in Anatolia. Bursa cutlery is just one of them. Unfortunately, we have no reliable source regarding Bursa knives. That’s why we have obstacles in academic study and research.  One of the biggest problems in producing handmade knives is mass production. As known, mass production means less cost and it eliminates the master-apprentice tradition. This handcraft passed along from father to son to be a priceless legacy then from master to apprentice in earlier times is now about to disappear, which means loss of cultural and ethnographic values. Traditional handcrafts which are subsidized in some countries are on the verge of disappearing in our country. It is known that there were lots of towns where knives were made in the Ottoman Empire Period. Some of them still exist and Bursa is one of the most important ones. With this article Bursa knives have been recorded and given basic features of them and obtained typology. To that end, firstly, the forms of handles and materials used were analyzed in having the typology. When handle forms were the same but the embroidery technique was different. Classifications were made under subgroups. On the other hand, carrier sheath is another major detail in traditional Bursa knife. Sheaths for spear, dagger and hunting knives are made with great care, whereas, plastic carrier is preferred for kitchen knives for package reason. The cutler profession in Bursa is one of the traditional profession can maintain its 700-year adventure. In this study, cutler profession in Bursa and Bursa’s knives has been researched and typology of Bursa’s knives was tried to generate. Thus, the 700-year school and therefore a treasure which should not be lost, aimed to prevent deletion from memories. And in this article, carrier and sheaths are carefully considered in the analysis of the typology. The characteristics of traditional Burs knives were cited in this article. In doing so, recent problems concerning Bursa knives were questioned. Responsibilities of national and local administrations were stated one by one in order to pass along traditionally made Bursa knives to future generation. Another objective of this article is to introduce Bursa knives to World markets. Unlucky, this handcraft lives on thanks to just three knife masters at present. In this study, a link was constructed between knives traditionally made the knives made in recent years.