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MacPhee House Community Museum

Sickle


Accession number: 1984.001.013
Date: 1890 – 1920
Materials: Steel; Wood
Measurements: 44.3 cm L x 16.5 cm W x 2.9 cm ThickBlade 31.5 cm long, 2.9 cm wide, 0.35 cm thick at rear edge. Handle 12.8 cm long, a truncated cone from 2.9 cm diameter at the blade to 3.5 cm diameter at the end.
Narrative: The curved blade for harvesting crops with long stalks such as grains has been in use for millenia. Examples have been found using flints set in curved bone - dating to the very beginning of agriculture!
So universal was the use of the curved sickle in pre-mechanized farming that it was adopted (along with the hammer) as an iconic symbol in the Russian Revolution in 1917.
A bundle of stalks of the desired crop is held in one hand, or the crook of an arm, while the sickle blade is drawn across them, effecting the cut.
Description: A hand-held tool used for cutting tall grass or stocks of grain with a curved, hook-like blade mounted in a short light wooden handle.