History of canes
The history of the walking sticks is full of samples, sometimes by curious ones, of the uses that human beings have given them: it can be a complement to our dress, a measure element, a self-defense element, a playing instrument, a magical article but, over all, a faithful fellow.
From the beginning of the times walking sticks have accompanied the evolution of human beings. It was a faithful travel fellow to groups of hunters and gatherers, they used the strongest branches of the more resistant and moldable trees as sugarcane or rushes…. But what they prefer and used more were the bones of the animals they hunted as they were easy to work and also very light.
During the Greek, Roman, Egyptian or Visigoth times the utility of the walking stick changed: it was no longer an aid to the walk but an authority sign and the sticks of command appear.
During the Middle Ages the walking sticks were a faithful fellow of the pilgrims or the soldiers from the Crusades when they travelled from one place to another. On those moments the walking sticks were strong sticks and nearly always finished with a metallic pointer: they did not only help during the walk but were used as a weapon that allowed the defense in front of animals or bandits.
From the XVI century on the walking stick became a distinction sign for the powerful classes and there are a lot of portraits of important men carrying a walking stick.
The discovery of America increased the type and characteristics of the walking sticks, special and unknown woods were used to make new models, gold and precious stones were incrusted on them. During this time the walking stick became an authority sign of the European aristocracy and became a part of the time’s fashion.
From this time on the manufacture of walking sticks increased at all the main European cities, they had a special interest on the pieces that came from far away countries as Egypt, China or Arabia. At the end of the XIX century an English manufacturer could sell more than five thousand walking sticks during a year.
Nowadays the walking stick is not only a distinction signs for the most powerful classes but also countryside people use it for helping them with the pasturage or as a walking stick for grown up people. The trekking enthusiasts have found in the walking stick a necessary aid for their long walks.
The collecting fashion is very important. The enthusiasts of walking sticks don’t doubt in searching unique and singular pieces to increase their collections.