16 October 2021

Do you know the English word for this?

Growing up in India, we used to get our shoes repaired every time they sprung a hole or a nail got dislodged. I have not visited a cobbler ever since I came to this country. I suspect, it is cheaper to replace a pair of shoes than repair it these days. At least the kind of shoes I wear.

But in those days, a cobbler used to come by our neighborhood every Saturday and anybody who needed shoes repaired, got them done by him. As a small kid filled with curiosity, it was a marvel to watch the cobbler stitch the thread using a needle with a sidecut that would be used as a hook to loop the thread in and pull thru.

And he always carried a heavy anvil like the one in the picture. Do you remember this?

Did you know that there is an English word for this? I always thought of it as an anvil but as it turns out, there is an exact word to refer to this cobbler’s instrument.

What is it?