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A working blacksmith in 1970

A metalsmith, often shortened to smith, is a person involved in making metal objects. In contemporary use a metalsmith is a person who uses metal as a material, uses traditional metalsmithing techniques (though not necessarily the material), whose work thematically relates to the practice or history of the practice, or who engages in any number metal related activities.

Contents

Etymology of smith

The word smith is cognate with the somewhat archaic English word, "smite", meaning "to hit" or "to strike". Originally, smiths practiced their crafts by forming metal with hammer blows. However, the old etymological guess of "smite" as the source of "smith" is without foundation. "smith" derives from an old Teutonic word, smeithan, to forge. The root is seen in the Greek word σμίλη, a burin.[1]

As an English suffix, -smith connotes a meaning of specialized craftsmen — for example, wordsmith and tunesmith are nouns synonymous with writer or songwriter, respectively.

History of Metalsmiths

In pre-industrialized times, smiths held high or special social standing since they supplied the metal tools needed for farming (especially the plough) and warfare. This was especially true in some West African cultures.

Types of smiths

Illustration by Theodor Kittelsen for Johan Herman Wessel's The Smith and the Baker

Types of smiths include: [2]

  • a blacksmith works with iron and steel; (this is what is usually meant when referring just to "Smith")
  • a fendersmith makes and repairs the metal fender before fireplaces, protecting rugs and furniture in mansions and fine estates, and frequently cares for the fires as well;
  • a tinsmith, tinner, or tinker works with light metal (such as tinware) and can refer to someone who deals in tinware;
  • a whitesmith works with white metal (tin) and can refer to someone who polishes or finishes the metal rather than forging it.
  • a coinsmith works strictly with coins and currency

Artisans and craftpeople

The ancient traditional tool of the smith is a forge or smithy, which is a furnace designed to allow compressed air (through a bellows) to superheat the inside, allowing for efficient melting, soldering and annealing of metals. Today, this tool is still widely used by blacksmiths as it was traditionally.

The term, metalsmith, often refers to artisans and craftpersons who practice their craft in many different metals, including gold, copper and silver. Jewelers often refer to their craft as metalsmithing, and many universities offer degree programs in metalsmithing, jewelry, enameling and blacksmithing under the auspices of their fine arts programs. [4]

Machinists

Machinists are metalsmiths who produce high-precision parts and tools. The most advanced of these tools, CNC machines, are computer controlled and largely automated.

References

  1. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg "Smith". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). 1911.  
  2. ^ John Fuller, Sr., Art of Coppersmithing, Astragal Press, 1993 (reprint of original edition, 1894) ISBN 1879335379
  3. ^ Silversmithing, Rupert Finegold and William Seitz, Krause Publications, 1983, ISBN 0801972329
  4. ^ Tim McCreight, Jewelry: Fundamentals of Metalsmithing, Hand Books Press, 1997, ISBN 1880140292

External links

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Template:References

A smith, or metalsmith, is a person involved in the shaping of metal objects.

In pre-industrialized times, smiths held high or special social standing since they supplied the metal tools needed for farming (especially the plough) and warfare.

Contents

Etymology of smith

for Johan Herman Wessel's The Smith and the Baker]]

The word smith is cognate with the somewhat archaic English word, "smite", meaning "to hit" or "to strike". Originally, smiths practiced their crafts by forming metal with hammer blows.

As an English suffix, -smith connotes a meaning of specialized craftsmen — for example, wordsmith and tunesmith are nouns synonymous with writer or songwriter, respectively.

Types of smiths

Types of smiths include: [1]

  • a blacksmith works with iron and steel; (this is what is usually meant when referring just to "Smith")
  • a bladesmith forges knives, swords, and other blades;
  • a fendersmith makes and repairs the metal fender before fireplaces, protecting rugs and furniture in mansions and fine estates, and frequently cares for the fires as well;
  • a locksmith works with locks;
  • a tinsmith, tinner, or tinker works with light metal (such as tinware) and can refer to someone who deals in tinware;
  • a swordsmith is a bladesmith who forges only swords;
  • a whitesmith works with white metal (tin) and can refer to someone who polishes or finishes the metal rather than forging it.

Artisans and craftpeople

The ancient traditional tool of the smith is a forge or smithy, which is a furnace designed to allow compressed air (through a bellows) to superheat the inside, allowing for efficient melting, soldering and annealing of metals. Today, this tool is still widely used by blacksmiths as it was traditionally.

The term, metalsmith, often refers to artisans and craftpersons who practice their craft in many different metals, including gold, copper and silver. Jewelers often refer to their craft as metalsmithing, and many universities offer degree programs in metalsmithing, jewelry and blacksmithing under the auspices of their fine arts programs. [3]

Machinists

Machinists are metalsmiths who produce high-precision parts and tools. The most advanced of these tools, CNC machines, are computer controlled and largely automated.

References

  1. John Fuller, Sr., Art of Coppersmithing, Astragal Press, 1993 (reprint of original edition, 1894) ISBN 1879335379
  2. Silversmithing, Rupert Finegold and William Seitz, Krause Publications, 1983, ISBN 0801972329
  3. Tim McCreight, Jewelry: Fundamentals of Metalsmithing, Hand Books Press, 1997, ISBN 1880140292

External links


Simple English

A smith, or metalsmith, is a person who makes things from metal.

Metal smiths were very important before industrialisation because they made metal tools for farming (especially the plough) and weapons for fighting in wars.

Contents

Etymology of smith

The word smith means "to hit" or "to strike". Originally, smiths made things from metal by using a hammer.

As an English suffix, -smith at the end of a word means a craftsmen. For example, a "locksmith" makes locks.

Types of smiths

Types of smiths include:

  • a bladesmith forges knives, swords, and other blades;
  • a coppersmith, or brownsmith, works with copper;
  • a fendersmith makes and repairs the metal fender before fireplaces, protecting rugs and furniture in mansions and fine estates, and often looks after the fires as well;
  • a gunsmith works with guns;
  • a locksmith works with locks;
  • a pewtersmith works with pewter;
  • a silversmith, or brightsmith, works with silver;
  • a tinsmith, or tinner, works with light metal (such as tinware) and can refer to someone who deals in tinware;
  • a swordsmith is a bladesmith who forges only swords;
  • a whitesmith works with white metal (tin) and can refer to someone who polishes or finishes the metal rather than forging it.

Artisans and Craftpersons

The ancient traditional tool of the smith is a forge or smithy, which is a fire which allows compressed air (through a bellows) to heat the inside until it is hot enough for metal to melt so that it can be made into the shape that is required. .

The term, metalsmith, often refers to artisans and craftpersons who practice their craft in many different metals, including gold, copper and silver. Jewelers often refer to their craft as metalsmithing, and many universities offer degree programs in metalsmithing, jewelry and blacksmithing as part of their fine arts programs.

A tinker is a metalsmith who mends kettles, pots and pans. They were often poor, itinerant workers (walking from place to place looking for jobs).

Machinists

Machinists are metalsmiths who produce high-precision parts and tools. The most advanced of these tools, CNC machines, are computer controlled and largely automated.


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