After reading through, here are some thoughts on what I think are the boundaries of the "iconic knife" description. Not getting into what makes it actually iconic (impactful, revolutionary, historic etc). Also, any specific brand/model combination can be argued to be an iconic knife... I'm just talking here about theoretical edge-cases and which conditions could allow one to be submitted in a "iconic knives" list. An iconic knife cannot be a brand. Unless that knife is the only one made by this brand. (exception 1)In terms of military knives, a specific instance or a succession of "XYZ official knife" instances could be "an iconic knife". (exception 2)In terms of civilian knives, a specific widespread design could be "an iconic knife".(3)The Opinel, for example, had for the longest time only one model in multiple sizes. That historical Opinel (forgetting the new models and variations) either in the specific most common size or as a design (regardless of its size) could fit exception 1 and/or 3. "Historical Opinel" or "Historical Opinel design", for example, seem like potentially valid list entries.I don't feel like SAKs can be defined as "an iconic knife" as a group. Each model/design would need to be argued individually; I can see the Spartan, Classic, SwissChamp or maybe Huntsman as possibly making the cut but probably not a climber or farmer. On the other hand, the true SAK (official knives of the Swiss Army) could fit exception 2 although a case could be made for individual instances either under 2 or under 3.USMC knife(/knives) fits 2 and/or 3.A "function" design (one concept/function, many makers, many shape/size variations) such as the chinese cleaver or the Chef's knife, fileting knife, oister knife or even steak knife (which household doesn't have one of those?), could fit in description 3 but the case for it being "iconic" would need to be very strong.The "still in production" criterion seems like a pretext of the original article to advertise knives that can be sold. I'd argue that most iconic knives probably can't still be purchased in all their original materials (steel, scales, rivets etc..)."iconic brands" should be another conversation unless it matches description 1.Swords... I don't know... If we go down that path it may just turn out as a list of major swords and sabers designs that could be found on a historical replicas website. An exception could be a sword so iconic that some of its specific design features was later passed down to knives? As for what constitutes an iconic knife, while not wanting to go encyclopedic I still think there should be some objective evidence; either documented reference or general/regional concensus.Just my 2 cents disagree at will!
I'm inclined to second Santos' Douk-Douk nomination, but I don't know how well known that knife is outside of the Mediterranean. For me, the Douk-Douk is an iconic knife. It represents a lot of history and has cultural significance. But even many knife people may have a hard time describing a Douk-Douk or its origins.
The former Wikipedia article reminded me of the Okapi knife. Originally from South Africa, the ratchet-like lock is very unique and recognizable.(Image removed from quote.)
The former Wikipedia article reminded me of the Okapi knife. Originally from South Africa, the ratchet-like lock is very unique and recognizable.
I haven't abandoned this thread . I've been pondering the knives and wonderful contributions made to this thread. I'm gonna have a go at a list and we'll see what happens. Thank you for all the comments and suggestions.