How the Romans invented the Swiss knife


How the Romans invented the Army Knife 1800 years before the Swiss

Michael Carroll

Source :



                                                                   Roman army tool Image 2

Here is the proof that the Romans invented the first type of Swiss Army knife - almost 2000 years ago.

Their version of the multi-purpose pocket tool has a spoon, knife, three-pronged fork, spike and what looks like a toothpick.

And it was around centuries before the well known, red-handled penknife that originated in Switzerland in 1897. The ancient tool has gone on di splay at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.

Spokeswoman Lucy Theobald said: "It's believed to be an example of a Roman Swiss Army knife.

"It's a silver implement with a knife, spoon, fork, a spike for extracting meat from snails, and a spatula, which is believed to have been used for poking sauce out of narrow-necked bottles."

At only 15cm long, it would have fitted easily into the pocket and is easy to clean and sharpen thanks to the silver and iron used to make it.

It is estimated to date from between 201 and 300AD and originates from the Mediterranean, where it was found. Experts believe the device would have been used for eating by a well-off traveller.

Modern Swiss Army knives were created by Karl Elsener and provided the country's soldiers with a battlef ield toolkit.

They have since become standard issue for many modern-day fighting forces.