In the past, Laguiole knife handles were often found without shepherd’s cross and even without any decoration. Sometimes other shapes were used, such as “dotting” in the form of almond heads or rivets, in the center of the handle.

So why has the shepherd’s cross survived the ages and is still found on Laguiole knives?

Our Laguiole knives feature a cross on the handle. This cross is called the shepherd's cross.

The shepherds spent long summer months alone with their herds outside in the pastures. The Laguiole knife was a constant companion and indispensable tool. To enable praying on these lonely pastures, they used the cross on the handle by putting the knife in the loaf of bread.

However, the shepherd’s cross is not a symbol of authenticity. It does not mean that the knife is a “real” Laguiole, but is often found as well on knives of inferior quality.

Forge de Laguiole knives with encrusted handles: Ram’s horn, Aubrac cow horn, barrel oak do not have a shepherd’s cross for technical and aesthetic reasons. By adding the rivets, some of the crusty material would have to be removed.


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