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VIII] THE CARPENTER 97

hammer and two little 'ones, two pairs of pincers, an ‘yron dogge,’
four spoke shaves, twenty-one augers, and other ‘ trincketes,’ worth
altogether thirty-three shillings and four pence. This gives us an
indication of the stock of tools kept by a provincial carpenter in
the days of Queen Elizabeth. '

Earlier than this, in the first half of the thirteenth century,
John de Garlande had written that timbers were wrought with
‘ hachet,’ ‘brode axe,’ ‘ twybyl,’ axe, wimble, wedges and pins, celt,
plane, mason’s line, with ‘reule’ and ‘squyre’ and with ‘hevy
plomet.’

Throughout the Middle Ages, the axe was the carpenter’s tool
par excellence. There is an illustration‘ in a thirteenth century life
of Edward the Confessor, which shows three craftsmen taking
their instructions from the king: first a master mason in oflicial
master’s cap, wearing gloves, and carrying a long, levelling straight-
edge: kneeling before him is the carpenter with a coif on his head
and carrying an axe, and behind the master is another mason with
a stone axe.

The old glossaries give some indication of the former importance
of the axe: thus ‘ lignum,’ that is building timber, is translated as
hewn wood in vocabularies from the time of Aelfric to the twelfth
century. ‘ Dolatum,’ ‘ incisum,’ and ‘ planum’ are all translated by
hewed in the tenth century, and ‘dolatum,’ alone, is translated by
‘sniden’ in vocabularies of the eighth and eleventh centuries, so
that to the compilers of the pre-Conquest glossaries, timber with a
finished surface was that which had been dressed by the axe, or
which had been through the saw pit.

To-day, in England, we hardly realise the skill and speed
with which an axe may be wielded. It is said that the car-
penters of Dalcarlia and Norrland, in Sweden, ‘require no other
tools than the axe and the auger, and despise the saw and plane
as contemptible innovations, fit only for those unskilful in the
handling of the nobler instruments: they will trim and square a
log forty feet long as true as if it had been cut in the saw mill, and
will dress it to a face that cannot be distinguished from planed
work’.’

The old German instrument for smoothing timber, the broad

1 Reproduced by Professor W. R. Lethaby in his Westminster Abbey and the King’s

C raflsmen.
2 Alex. Beazeley, Transactions qf llze Royal Instilufe of British Architects, 1882—3.

1. B. c. 7

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