Sunday, February 25, 2018

Mystery Object: An Ivory and Sterling Thingamajig

Chronica Domus
Photo: Chronica Domus


I do so love the word thingamajig.  It is a delightful word that, in my ever so humble opinion, is underappreciated and not used often enough.  Today's post provides the perfect opportunity to change all that.

Thingamajig is defined as a thing whose name one has either forgotten or does not know.  In the case of this particular object, or thingamajig, I thought I knew its name and its intended purpose until, that was, my very clever teenage daughter Patience entered the discussion.

Chronica Domus
Hmmm... I wonder what the purpose of this ivory and sterling silver thingamajig might be
Photo: Chronica Domus


She was with me the day I purchased it and saw how tickled pink I was to have finally stumbled across such an unusual example - or so I thought - of a longed-for item.  Upon our return home, I excitedly removed said object from the layers of tissue paper within which the store clerk had wrapped it, and gave it a quick polish until it gleamed.  It was then that my daughter casually put forth a suggestion.  In that brief light bulb moment, Patience had me viewing the darn thing with fresh eyes.  

Chronica Domus
The back of the mystery thingamajig's shank showing full British hallmarks
Photo: Chronica Domus


Sure enough, a quick gander on the Internet only confirmed what she had already successfully sussed out.  No longer relegated to thingamajig status, the object could finally be defined by its true name and purpose.

So, what do you think this almost six inch long, ivory and sterling silver item is, and what was it used for?  All shall be revealed in my next post.  In the meantime, I very much look forward to reading your supposals and contemplations with interest.  And remember, no peeking on the Internet allowed!


Nota bene: Comment moderation will be enabled to give everyone a chance to offer their suggestions.  

40 comments:

  1. Is it a marrow scoop/spoon?

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    1. Good guess but you'll have to come back and read the reveal post soon.

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  2. Love the term 'Thingamajig' too! I am thinking it is a cheese 'corer' (for sampling to check the ripeness of hard cheeses like cheddar)? I have a recollection of seeing one once on a programme on French Cheeses... Just a guess! Interested in finding out what it really is!
    Best wishes,
    Caroline

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    1. Yes, I know what you mean. My husband has an old one that he actually used on a Cheddar cheese he attempted to make some years agao.

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  3. That lovely "thingamjig" is for Stilton cheese - you wedge it in the middle and then pour in port for that heavenly combination. And it just tastes better and better the longer it sits!

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    1. Port and Stilton is always a good combination.

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  4. “Marrow Scoop” jumped immediately to mind, but both the handle and scoop proportions don’t seem right. The handle seems a bit too short and rounded. Faithfully resisting the temptation to dive into the Internet, I yield to those more knowledgeable than I and eagerly await their comments.

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    1. Thanks for your suggestion, Georgia. Do please read the follow-up post where all will be revealed.

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  5. Used for Stilton I believe.

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  6. Hi CD,

    My first thought is a marrow bone spoon but perhaps that's the obvious wrong answer? Beyond that I haven't a clue! We all love having beautifully made thingamajigs about the home and yours is elegant indeed.

    All the best from Sydney,
    Vanessa

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    1. I rather agree with you, elegant thingamajigs about the house are indeed a pleasure.

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  7. Goody, goody. I love these challenges. Is it a marrow scoop?

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    1. Nice try, SB. Do come back to read the follow-up post won't you.

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  8. This lovely "thingamjig" is used to add port to wheels of Stilton. What a wonderful piece to have, too!

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    1. Ah, another port/stilton guess, thank you. All shall be revealed shortly.

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  9. Hello CD, My first fleeting thought when the picture was coming into focus was a marrow scoop, but they are usually thinner and don't have that kind of handle. Next I thought of a cheese scoop, but the ones for table use are usually not so long or heavily built.

    On the other hand, a cheese tester or corer would be at least that long, and would need a sturdy handle that fits the palm in order to apply pressure to a sturdier cheese. (It also looks about right for an apple corer, but these are usually kitchen items and not so well made.)

    An alternate guess would be some sort of surgical instrument, as these were sometimes finely made, but it really looks like a lot of cheese testers I have seen.

    I'd better end this before I win by default by guessing every object in the world.
    --Jim

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    1. OK Jim, yes, you'd better stop as I believe you've covered all conceivable combinations of what this thingamajig is.

      Good try and you've come the closest to guessing so far.

      Delete
  10. Hello CD,

    I like this game, but never have a clue so this time I've enlisted help - my husband suggests a cheese corer.

    We both look forward to all being revealed.

    Spud.

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    1. Nice try Spud (and Mr. Spud). Please do read the follow-up post and let me know what you think.

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  11. Well, the only thing I can think of is a cheese core testing thingy? I've seen them use things like this to test enormous wheels of cheese.... so that's about my only suggestion! I'll be interested to hear what it's true purpose is for!

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    Replies
    1. Another vote for cheese corer, thank you. Follow-up post coming shortly so do please stay tuned.

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  12. Your mystery object is elegant.
    A tool--culinary? Removing seeds?
    gardening? For planting?
    sewing? Opening seams?
    Can't wait until the mystery is solved.
    BarbG

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    1. So many possibilities but yes, it does have something to do with seeds I suppose.

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  13. Is this a marrow knife? It's lovely whatever it might be.

    slf

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    1. I agree, it is lovely and when you find out what it's intended purpose is, you'll think it lovlier.

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  14. Is it a marrow spoon? Carolyn

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    1. Nice try, Carolyn but ... stay tuned for the big reveal.

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  15. stilton cheese scoop or bone marrow scoop? Dave in Portland Maine

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    1. Stilton and bone marrow scoops seems to be the top guesses for this particular mystery item. I do hope you come back and tell me what you think after I've revealed all.

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  16. I am going to say its a marrow scoop!

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    1. My oh my, another vote for marrow scoop, thank you.

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  17. I immediately thought it was a marrow scoop. However, unless your daughter has an interest in 18th century dining, I'm convinced it must be something else. I anxiously await your next post.
    Susan Sobol

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    1. Most amusing, Susan, thank you.

      I hope you'll enjoy the reveal post coming shortly.

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  18. Perhaps it's an unusual marrow spoon or Stilton scoop?

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    1. Thank you, Ariane, it appears that both the marrow and cheese scoop theory runs strong.

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  19. Here's a comment I received in an email from racheld:

    Testing, Testing---just seeing if this little attempt to communicate may be successful---still marooned in the No-Land betwixt Google and Blog. This little Thingamajig is indeed an interesting item---it bears striking favor to a larding needle, though quite small for the job, and though my mind went quickly to a personal small marrow spoon, I've given up on that one, for the mere inconvenience of carrying one around in the event of one's being offered such rich, unusual fare. (Besides, one's valet would frown on the messy pocket, and all the sponging required, though the matching silver toothpick might have already put him off his elevenses).

    It also reminded me of the line about the "Greedy Aunt who always managed to excavate the ripest spoonful from the center of the Stilton," no matter the loss or mess left for subsequent diners.

    Such a lovely day today with sunshine streaming through doors and windows (all glass closed, for the temp doesn't match the glow). A pre-March day for whipping sheets onto the line and bringing them in sun-scented and soft, for a presage of the sweet sleep of Spring.

    Why oh why do I seem to launch into the verbiage of a previous century when I'm writing to you? I HAVE, just this morning, been jotting down a bit about a wonderful little old grocer in the small Southern town of my childhood---his round shape and size and courtly manners would have lent him to almost any Dickens novel, with his slicked-down barbershop-quartet hair and his twinkly feet scampering the oiled old boards of the store's floor. His apron was always white and quite to his ankles, like that of an early bistro waiter, and his keys hung jingling from a belt-loop.

    And a happy Spring-y day to you out there in (sunnier?) CA!

    r

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    1. Oh you do paint a vivid picture with your words, dearest racheld.

      I am so sorry to hear that you are still having issues with posting but I thank you for your email and your vote for a larding needle, an item unknown to me.

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  20. Could this be a cheese tester? I have seen cheese makers use a similar tool to pull out a cylinder of aging cheese such as Parmesan to determine if the block/wheel is ready.
    Best,
    KL Gaylin

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    1. Ah, close but no. Do please check out the latest blog post to find out the real answer.

      Thanks for playing along - such fun!

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Please do leave a comment as I enjoy the dialogue with my readership, thank you.

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