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The knife is a traditional accessory of the Tibetan people. Tourists are attracted by its unique and exquisite design and often take it as a souvenir or as a gift to friends.

There are various sizes of Tibetan knives. The larger ones can be over 1 meter (3.3 ft.) long while smaller ones may be only 10 cm long (0.3 ft.). To make a knife requires skillful work. The blade is usually first forged from wrought iron and then sharpened and brightened by intense manual work. The handle is made of ox horn or bone or wood and may be wrapped with silver or copper wire. The most fantastic part is the sheath. Outside the wooden or leather sheath, usually brass, cupronickel or silver is added. To make it more gorgeous it might be adorned with patterns of animals, flowers or plants along with gems or gold plate.

The knives for men and women differ. Men's knives usually seem wild while women's are elegant. Knives made in different regions of Tibet vary by shape. The most famous Tibetan knives are from Lhatse and Zhethongmon of Shigatse, Damxung of Lhasa, to name just a few.

 Tips: Knives are prohibited on the plane and train , but can be mailed from the local post office.

Comments and Questions

can i buy a small knife and for personal use such as cut an apple? can i take it to the train??


11/30/2010 7:59:00 PM


Asked by Hemlata (India)

not very sure. but i have taken a very small knife on the train. i just use it peel the apple.

12/1/2010 7:56:00 PM



It would be very difficult, for only masters can do this.


9/4/2008 9:12:00 PM


Asked by Rex (China)

i am just wondering if someone can help me identify a knife for me..i was told that the knife was from a guard...i can send pictures if someone will email me...thank you.


9/3/2008 12:53:00 AM


Asked by ed (United States)