Knife engraved with Dore's illustrations for Dante's Inferno

This gorgeous knife is elaborately engraved with scenes replicating Dore's illustrations to Dante's Inferno; I'm not clear on whether this is a knife or a razor (which is technically a knife, I know) -- the forum is called "Straight Razor Forum," the poster calls it a "knife," and the piece does not resemble straight razors or pocket knives of my experience. I'm sure that when I check this post tomorrow morning (it's queued up to go live after I go to bed in London) the comments will have settled the question in excruciating detail.

The theme was Dante's Inferno and the images are based on Dore's illustrations for the book. The toughest part was that I had to alter the images to make them fit the format of the windows. I had to make the altered images still recognizable as the classic Dore illustrations.

The "frames" are sculpted and the images are bulino engraved. The scenes on the hidden panels were also bulino engraved. The knife was made by Joe Kious of Kerrville, TX.

Default Dante's Inferno theme engraving

(via Making Light)


    1. I’d like to, but it’s just not the same if it’s not banana related.

      Seriously, an edition of The Divine Comedy with the Dore engravings was at a friend’s house when I was young, and they did blow my mind back then.  They still do, now that I think about it.

  1. OK, now you just have to use the same knife to carve a woodcut of Dore’s illustrations to Dante’s Inferno drawings, so you can print ’em.

  2. It is, in fact a folding knife and not a razor. There’s a lot of overlap in the custom knife makers and the folks who make custom straight razors, and the Straight Razor Place hosts some of that overlap. The Dante knife was shared in one of the forums dedicated to things that aren’t straight razors.

    I also massively covet it.

  3. Looks like just about any other folding knife I’ve ever seen. Maybe they don’t have the blunt orange safety cones that come on UK knives. (I keed! I keed!)

    While I liked the ‘Damascus steel’ look, the modern stuff is so uniform and common, it’s almost blase now.

    Now – those sliding doors are NEAT. Anyone who hasn’t click through, do so.

  4. Oh! I should also point out that while the knife itself was made by Joe Kious, the engraving was done by Ray Cover. It’s a collaborative piece.

    Both of them do fantastic work elsewhere, too.  Ray Cover’s website is here:

    I can’t find a single site for Joe Kious, but googling his name turns up a lot of places that sell his work.

  5. I’m a huge fan of Dante’s inferno, and this engraving work on the knife is absolutely stunning. Would be tempted to want to commission something like this but… being a drop-out with student loans and a retail job kind of settles that D:

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