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Label

Rising early each day to dress and shave, George Washington scrupulously maintained the clean-shaven appearance expected of a gentleman in the late eighteenth century. This straight razor, encased in ivory with silver rivets, met Washington's criteria for elegant but plain possessions. Washington may have also valued the razor as a token of French support during the American Revolution. The stamped mark on the blade "Langlois/[C * D]UROY" identifies the maker, Langlois, as "Coutelier du Roy" [cutler to the king], a prestigious title that suggests he enjoyed royal patronage.

Description

Steel straight razor with ivory scales; tapering, oblong steel blade with square point attached between two scales at one end with iron rivet; a small ivory spacer at the opposite end separates the two scales, and all are held together by another iron rivet; four silver bosses surround the ends of the rivets on the exterior of the scales; blade stamped with maker's mark on one side near its base.

Date

c. 1790


People


Geography


Material/Technique

Ivory, steel, silver, iron


Dimensions

Overall (Closed): 5/16 in. x 6 3/16 in. x 1 1/8 in. (0.79 cm x 15.72 cm x 2.87 cm)
Overall (Open): 3/8 in. x 10 11/16 in. x 11/16 in. (0.97 cm x 27.15 cm x 1.75 cm)


Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Alexander Boyd Andrews, Vice Regent for North Carolina, 1912


Marks

Stamped on blade: "LANGLOIS [fleur de lys symbol] / [C * D]UROY"


Object Number

W-494


Colors (Beta)


Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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