Hand-Forged Knives and Swords in Oaxaca–Apolinar Aguilar Keeps the Tradition Alive

The famed Oaxaca knife maker Angel Aguilar died several years ago and his brother Apolinar carries on the craftsman tradition by making forging Toledo steel swords and knives in the Angel Aguilar Studio in Ocotlan de Morales, Oaxaca.  I wanted to update all the mis-information floating about that Angel is still at his forge!

Someone recently wrote to me to suggest that.  So, I thought I would add a small insert here to the contrary to keep accurate information circulating on the Internet.

I want to refer you to the very brief Oaxaca Times story about Apolinar Aguilar Velasco written in August 2011.

Friends of Oaxaca Folk Art features Apolinar in their fine book on Oaxaca Folk Art and on their website where you can see a photo of him and his fantastic work.  You can find Apolinar at Callejón Victoria S/N, Ocotlan de Morales, Oaxaca.

As a sidebar: What is fascinating about all the information available online is that it can quickly become outdated and unreliable!  So, it’s important to check facts before referring people to a website or blog that might have come down years ago 🙂  Which is why I am not going to approve the comment about how to find Angel Aguilar and reference to an article written in 2006!

 

3 Responses to Hand-Forged Knives and Swords in Oaxaca–Apolinar Aguilar Keeps the Tradition Alive

  1. I have recently purchased a sword with Oaxaca engraved on one side with two Jack rabbits and other flourishes and on the other side more flourishes with the words si no las curo les mato la comezon I would like to know what the phrase means and if I got a good deal or not either the balance and look of the sword is very nice oh and the handle appears to be bone with brass hand guard and eagle head at the bottom possibly bronze

  2. We have a knife with the following engraving:
    AAragoneHijos
    J.P.Garcia No 15
    OaxacaOax.Mex
    This knife is also engraved with deer, a hunter, dogs, catcus and rabbit. The initials PEM are near the hilt of the knife, and the lettering “Solo el que carga el cajon sabe lo que pesa el muerto.”
    Can you tell me anything about his knife?
    Thank you!

    • Richard, sounds like you have a beautiful knife, all handmade. There are few metal smiths remaining in Oaxaca who do handmade work. I know more about textiles than I do about this work. You might want to look at Friends of Oaxaca Folk Art website to see if there are any clues there.

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