Interesting facts about blacksmiths

The surname Kuznetsov is one of the most common in our country. This suggests that the craft was very popular and honorable in Russia. And in the world of the namesakes Kuznetsov millions: Koval, Kovalevsky, Kovalchuk, Schmidt, Smith, Ferran, Kovacs and so on. It is noteworthy that the most popular among the British and Americans is the surname "Smith", which also translates as "blacksmith".

Among the rulers there were many who mastered, or tried to master, blacksmithing. For example, Peter the Great took an active part in forging ship anchors at a shipyard in Voronezh. King Charles IX of France personally forged locks and keys, and Louis XIV even had his own forge in the Palace of Versailles.

Since pagan times, among the revered gods were blacksmiths or their descendants, associated with the element of fire and the process of processing iron. So Hephaestus is the Greek god-blacksmith, Thor is Scandinavian, Woland is European. In popular belief, it is often believed that blacksmiths know with evil spirits.

The word "deceit" comes from the verb "forge". What's the connection? The Slavs considered blacksmithing to be mysterious and incomprehensible. Therefore, blacksmiths were not only respected, but also feared.

Painters and sculptors most often depicted blacksmiths with huge muscles, easily wielding a huge hammer. But, more often than not, it was not the blacksmiths who looked like this, but the hammers. Their duties differed: the blacksmith supervised the forging process, showing the hammer with a light hammer the place where to strike with the hammer. Therefore, we can say that the blacksmith did the intellectual part of the work, and the hammer - the physical.

The fun of the Irish blacksmiths (or hammers) eventually turned into a serious sports discipline, which is even included in the program of the Olympic Games. In their free time, they organized competitions - who would throw the smith's hammer next. Competitions have become so popular that they are now a type of athletics. True, the throwing hammer has undergone major changes, and now it does not in any way resemble a hammer for forging metal.

In Russia, there was a legend about a blacksmith who had excellent health. Every morning he went to the smithy, which was several miles from home. In order not to waste time, the blacksmith set up a hut next to the smithy. And soon he fell seriously ill. It turns out that daily walks helped remove harmful substances from the lungs that the blacksmith inhaled while working.

Forges were built on the outskirts of a village or village; there must have been a reservoir nearby. This was due to the fact that blacksmithing was flammable. One spark is enough for the smithy to flare up, and after it the neighboring buildings.

The dynasty of industrialists Demidov originates from the Tula blacksmith-gunsmith Nikita Demidov, who made weapons for the amusing troops of the young Peter. Demidov's efforts were not lost, thanks to the location of the tsar, he became one of the richest people in Russia. It is interesting that the blacksmith's hammer was adorned even on the Demidov's family coat of arms.

Russian blacksmiths even had their heavenly patrons - Saints Kosma and Demyan, whose memorial day the Russian Orthodox Church celebrates on November 14. On this day, blacksmiths do not start work, I consider it a great sin. According to popular beliefs, Kosma and Demyan were also blacksmiths, forging plows and distributing them to people so that they could cultivate the land.

There were no windows in the old smithies. This was explained by the fact that when forging a product, it is necessary to strictly maintain the temperature regime. And in ancient times this could only be determined by eye - by the color of the metal. And in the dark forge it was easier to do.