Whalers carved out an American art form Knoxville News Sentinel
Nike mercurial vapor football boots one of the pictures was a nike mercurial vapor football boots good look at an arm, and in the hand is something I believe is supposed to be a scrimshawdecorated whale’s tooth. The picture of the front of the piece is so blurry that all I can make out is the hazy image of a 19thcentury ship surrounded by what may or may not be a wreath.
The origin of the word “scrimshaw” seems to be in doubt, but many sources say it was derived from English or Dutch nautical slang that meant “to waste time, It is also said that scrimshaw or the art of engraving images on whale parts such as teeth and sheets of baleen is American in origin and originated with our New England whaling fleet in the early 19th century. However, the Eskimos or Inuit were nike mercurial vapor football boots engraving images on walrus tusks and other suitable materials for thousands of years before that.
Life on an American whaling vessel could be very dull when a whale was not being pursued or its carcass not being broken down for storage. To fill the empty nike superfly kids hours, members of the crew would take the left over parts of the whale mainly the teeth of sperm whales, the “baleen” (a sort of horn like substance formed as strainer plates in some types of whales), or just whale bone and carve designs into them or fashion them into love tokens for their wives, sweethearts and mothers.
Some of these projects were quite ambitious and lucky collectors might find a yarn winder, a corset busk (or stay), a jagging wheel or pie crimper, a knife handle, an elaborate spoon, or some sort of sewing nike mercurial vapor football boots implement such as a measuring stick, a needle case, or a marking gauge. Sometimes sheets of baleen were decorated with scenes of the whaler’s home town, and sperm whale teeth often had images of particular ships and whale hunts.
Of course, in modern times whale hunting has become repugnant to many and the various whale parts are no longer available for shrimshanders (yes, that is what scrimshaw artists are called) to use as a basis for their art. Other substances have been substituted including vegetable ivory, but there is also an abundance of what has been dubbed “fakeshaw” or commercially made designs stamped into simulated whale parts made from resin or some sort of polymer.
These pieces are extremely common in fact there are far, far more examples of fakeshaw out there than specimens of real whale scrimshaw. Those who are interested in this sort of thing must keep in mind that scrimshawdecorated teeth are real teeth and as such they once resided in the jaw of a living whale.
Looking at the base of a real scrimshawed whale’s tooth, it is obvious that it was once a living tooth with a deep, conical cavity inside. Looking at the base of a piece of “fakeshaw, it is fairly evident that its origin was in a factory because the inside is not conical and the base is much too thick and wide nike mercurial vapor football boots.