This object is eligible for a Certificate of BADA Provenance
A Superb Scrimshaw Narwhal Tusk Walking Cane with T Shaped Handle
Fine old deep spiral twist with a creamy smooth patina to the shaft
First half 19th Century
86cm long - 34 ins long
‘C.I.T.E.S’ Article 10 available
ARTICLE 10 number: 562506/01
The greatest Danish scientist of the 17th century was Ole Worm (1588 - 1654) who made a drawing in 1638 of the ‘monodon monoceros’ with its tusk. After attending Aarhus Cathedral school in Jutland he travelled and studied all over Europe before starting a career in Copenhagen in 1615. His interest in the truth of the existence of the unicorn was aroused when he was presented with a narwhal skull by Chancellor Christian Friis of Kragerup. Friis gave him the skull complete with the tusk and so provided him with the proof that had previously been difficult to obtain: the alicornus was indisputably attached to a whale. From then on Ole Worm was positive that the legendary unicorn horn was in fact a tusk!