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Update:February 18, 2016


[Makiri] knife, [Menoko-makiri] knife for women


Makiri A valuable all-purpose knife (photo: left)

For tasks such as woodcarving and preparing meals, a makiri knife was perhaps the most used tool in Ainu daily life. Men often carved beautiful patterns in the handle and sheath of a makiri, and proudly carried it at their waist. Some makiris were designed for specialized woodcrafts.

Menoko-makiri An important knife for women (photo: right)

A menoko-makiri is a knife for women. It was an essential tool in a woman's daily life such as for gathering edible wild plants and bark. A menoko-makiri is smaller than a makiri and it was always carried at one's waist.

When a man falls in love with a woman, he will carve beautiful patterns in the handle and sheath, and present it to the woman. If she hangs it her waist, it means that she has accepted his courtship.