2 What is This?

What is This?

Posted on September 22, 2014 by tim


Sometimes traveling across Russia can yield the things I bet most modern people have never seen before. Like this wooden thing in the hands of an Old Believer priest. Aksan, the photographer has taken a few photos of this thing, can you guess what this is at all?

We have more clear photos of it inside and also an answer if you scroll down to the bottom. But please don’t scroll at first, try to figure it out yourself!


So here is the thing.4244547_original

A close up.4244238_original

And Aksan holding it.


There were some wild guesses on what it is. Some even thought its a key from a church, but it is not. Some thought it was a sort of a rod or a religious wand, some people supposed the priest uses it to hit the bells to make them ring.



But actually the answer is much simpler. This is a template, or a sort of a ruler that old carpenters used to make those nice old antique looking wooden parts of the windows in Russian villages.

Like this one:

Резной оконный деревянный наличник


Pass it on! And thanks to Aksan for the photos.

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2 Responses to “What is This?”

  1. andy says:

    In US this would be called a jig or pattern jig. This example
    is remarkable because it itself is a work of art, as are the
    wonderful and intricate window trims. The device is very old. I made such window decorations myself, it was tough, it
    took several months for just 3 windows (on a log cabin) and the painting art was almost as hard to do. I had to make my own designs, but stole ideas from Russia!! Now I have even more respect for Russian craftsmanship.

  2. Erik Johnson says:

    Thank you !
    I see so much well done and interesting
    wood work in your postings .
    Wonderful to see one of the tools .

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