Laguiole from an etymological point of view

 for our ancestors in Aveyron, Laguiole comes from “The Gleisola” which means small chapel. The Americans prefer the name “La Yole” which also means an elongated, narrow boat with oars. The shape of “La Yole” reminded them of the shape of the knife blade.

Laguiole recognised internationally

we must explain that the Americans have their own point of view about the Laguiole due to mass migration of Europeans to the New World during the nineteenth century. Indeed, among these migrants, many Aveyron people fled the misery of the Aubrac plateau that no longer fed them, seeking fortune in the virgin lands of the Americas. In memory of their origins, they kept with them, as the only object of any value, their Laguiole knife. The knife gradually gained notoriety on the new continent and became for the Americans the ultimate French knife.

The Laguiole symbol of maturity

in the nineteenth century the tradition was for each boy aged from 12 to 14 to receive his first Laguiole knife from his father, a rite of passage from childhood to adolescence.

 

A peace knife

the Aubrac blade acquired worldwide recognition over the years and was given as a gift many times. The Laguiole: a gift that seals friendship. Be careful not to cut this friendship! Once you receive the knife, you should give a coin to the person in return.

The maintenance of the knife

How properly maintain the Laguiole knife? 3 essential rules:

First rule:

"Silent spring will become old" - To maintain as long as possible your Laguiole, the blade should not slam. You should gently open and close it so as to not solicit the spring resistance too much.

Second rule:

The knife is only used to cut - It is highly advice against using your Laguiole has another use than the one it was designed for.

Third rule:

The Laguiole isn’t washable, it is maintained - Formal prohibition to put a folding knife in the dishwasher or it may sulk! To wipe the blade after a meal, we recommend a towel or the inside of bread. For the handle, an upkeep with linseed oil or beeswax is perfect: soak a cloth and wipe it gently on the knife.

Note: It is the same for table knives except the one made with a special material like Crylux, G10 or POM (polyacetal) that are dishwasher-safe.

Aubrac plateau

The Laguiole was born on a volcanic plateau called “Aubrac” or “Montsd’Aubrac”. Straddling the Lozère, Cantal and Aveyron, this granite plateau is rising to an altitude of 1380 meters. The highest peak of the plateau remains the signal Mailhebiau at 1469 meters. This summit dominates essentially the Lot valley and the “Plomb du Cantal”.

The landscapes of the Aubrac region are characterized by gentle slopes, large pastures in the middle, forests of beech and fir trees on the surrounding area. Indeed, on this plateau grows a diverse and abundant flora. This richness is due to the good preservation of this environment where pastoral practices are preserved year after year.

When talking about pastoralism we firstly hear about transhumance, this great tradition where cattle crosses the Aubrac plateau from mountains to plains in winter and from plains to mountains in summer. Transhumance is a real ceremony where Aubrac cows wear their best outfits: flowers, flags, feathers, ribbons, they are decorated for this great occasion.