Knives used to be very important things for us because according to our popular belief they scare away evil spirits and protect you from misfortune. And of course it was an essential tool for common people, especially for agricultural workers who spent their whole day outdoors and needed something for preparing their lunch and doing other tasks. We used to have many famous master knifemakers in the past, unfortunately nowadays we have only a few. They even stopped teaching knifemaking at schools in the 1970s, so if somebody wants to learn it, he'll have to find a master, which is not easy. Mass production killed our knifemakers.
The tradition of carrying a knife has also disappeared for now due to urbanization and industrialization. People spend their day indoors, they use tableware and nobody believes that knives scare away evil spirits. Having a penknife is important only for those who like being outdoors. Some knife related traditions are still alive though. It is still said that a man without a penknife is not a real man or a Hungarian man never leaves home without a penknife. A knife shouldn't be given as a gift because it means hostility. If somebody gets a knife as a gift, he has to pay for it. Not much, only a coin. And the most important thing: you should never lend your knife to anybody.
As for myself I've never owned a traditional Hungarian penknife, mostly because their blades are usually quite large, so carrying them isn't legal.
Some of our traditional penknives:
Traditional Hungarian penknife for eating bacon
Typical farmer's knife, it's pretty tough
This one is almost the same and it's very popular
Penknife with detachable fork for sophisticated peasants
A fisherman. On his watch-chain there's a so called halbicska (fish-penknife) instead of a watch.
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