Wednesday, May 19, 2010


image This gorgeous swift, made of whalebone in the 19th century, was appraised by Antiques Roadshow at $15,000-$20,000.  Watch the video on the webpage to hear more about it (or read the transcript on the same page) - it’s interesting!  Apparently whalers on ships frequently passed the time by carving things out of whalebone and then selling them once back on shore.  Your vocabulary word today is scrimshaw:



/ˈskrɪmˌʃɔ/ Show Spelled[skrim-shaw] Show IPA


1.a carved or engraved article, esp. of whale ivory, whalebone, walrus tusks, or the like, made by whalers as a leisure occupation.

2.such articles or work collectively.

3.the art or technique of carving or engraving whale ivory, whalebone, walrus tusks, etc.

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