WOODWORKING is the activity or skill of making items from wood , and
includes cabinet making (
Furniture ), wood carving ,
joinery , carpentry , and woodturning .
* 1 History
* 1.2 Ancient Rome
* 1.3 Ancient China
* 2 Modern Day
* 3 Materials
* 4 Notable woodworkers
* 5 See also
* 6 Notes
* 7 References
* 7.1 Further reading
* 8 External links
Ancient Egyptian woodworking
Along with stone , clay and animal parts, wood was one of the first
materials worked by early humans . Microwear analysis of the
Mousterian stone tools used by the Neanderthals show that many were
used to work wood. The development of civilization was closely tied to
the development of increasingly greater degrees of skill in working
Woodworking shop in
Germany in 1568, the worker
in front is using a bow saw , the one in the background is planing .
Among early finds of wooden tools are the worked sticks from Kalambo
Clacton-on-Sea and Lehringen . The spears from Schöningen
Germany ) provide some of the first examples of wooden hunting gear.
Flint tools were used for carving. Since
Neolithic times , carved
wooden vessels are known, for example, from the Linear Pottery culture
wells at Kückhofen and
Bronze Age wood-carving include tree trunks worked into
coffins from northern
Denmark and wooden folding-chairs .
The site of Fellbach-Schmieden in
Germany has provided fine examples
of wooden animal statues from the
Iron Age Wooden idols from the La
Tène period are known from a sanctuary at the source of the
There is significant evidence of advanced woodworking in Ancient
Woodworking is depicted in many extant ancient Egyptian
drawings, and a considerable amount of ancient Egyptian furniture
(such as stools, chairs , tables , beds , chests ) has been preserved.
Tombs represent a large collection of these artefacts and the inner
coffins found in the tombs were also made of wood. The metal used by
Egyptians for woodworking tools was originally copper and
eventually, after 2000 BC bronze as ironworking was unknown until much
Commonly used woodworking tools included axes , adzes , chisels ,
pull saws , and bow drills .
Mortise and tenon
Mortise and tenon joints are attested
from the earliest Predynastic period . These joints were strengthened
using pegs, dowels and leather or cord lashings.
Animal glue came to
be used only in the
New Kingdom period . Ancient
the art of veneering and used varnishes for finishing , though the
composition of these varnishes is unknown. Although different native
acacias were used, as was the wood from the local sycamore and
tamarisk trees, deforestation in the
Nile valley resulted in the need
for the importation of wood, notably cedar , but also Aleppo pine ,
boxwood and oak , starting from the
Second Dynasty .
Woodworking was essential to the Romans. It provided, sometimes the
only, material for buildings, transportation, tools, and household
Wood also provided pipes, dye, waterproofing materials, and
energy for heat. :1Although most examples of Roman woodworking have
been lost, :2 the literary record preserved much of the contemporary
Vitruvius dedicates an entire chapter of his De
architectura to timber, preserving many details. Pliny, while not a
botanist, dedicated six books of his Natural History to trees and
woody plants which provides a wealth of information on trees and their
The progenitors of Chinese woodworking are considered to be Lu Ban
(魯班) and his wife Lady Yun, from the
Spring and Autumn period
Spring and Autumn period (771
to 476 BC).
Lu Ban is said to have introduced the plane , chalk-line,
and other tools to China. His teachings were supposedly left behind in
Lu Ban Jing (魯班經, "Manuscript of Lu Ban"). Despite
this, it is believed that the text was written some 1500 years after
his death. This book is filled largely with descriptions of dimensions
for use in building various items such as flower pots , tables, altars
, etc., and also contains extensive instructions concerning Feng Shui
. It mentions almost nothing of the intricate glue-less and nail-less
joinery for which
Chinese furniture was so famous. Damascene
woodworkers turning wood for mashrabia and hookass , 19th century.
Micronesian of Tobi ,
Palau , making a paddle for his wa with an
With the advances in modern technology and the demands of industry,
woodwork as a field has changed. The development of Computer Numeric
CNC ) Machines, for example, has made us able to
mass-produce and reproduce products, faster, with less waste, and
often more complex in design than ever before.
CNC Routers can carve
complicated and highly detailed shapes into flat stock, to create
signs or art. Rechargeable power tools speed up creation of many
projects and require much less body strength than in the past, when
boring multiple holes, for example. Skilled fine woodworking, however,
remains a craft pursued by many. There remains demand for hand crafted
work such as furniture and arts, however with rate and cost of
production, the cost for consumers is much higher.
Historically, woodworkers relied upon the woods native to their
region, until transportation and trade innovations made more exotic
woods available to the craftsman. Woods are typically sorted into
three basic types: hardwoods typified by tight grain and derived from
broadleaf trees, softwoods from coniferous trees, and man-made
materials such as plywood and MDF .
Typically furniture such as tables and chairs is made using solid
stock, and cabinet/fixture makers employ the use of plywood and other
man made panel products.
List of furniture designers
Frank E. Cummings III
* Mark Lindquist
Thomas J. MacDonald
David J. Marks
André Jacob Roubo
Henry O. Studley
Glossary of woodworking terms
History of construction
History of wood carving
Sloyd , a system of handicraft-based education
Wood as a medium
* ^ Killen, Geoffrey (1994). Egyptian
Woodworking and Furniture.
Shire Publications. ISBN 0747802394 .
* ^ Leospo, Enrichetta (2001), "
Woodworking in Ancient Egypt", The
Art of Woodworking,
Museo Egizio , p.20
* ^ Leospo, pp.20-21
* ^ Leospo, pp. 17-19
* ^ A B Ulrich, Roger B. (2008). Roman Woodworking. Yale University
Press. ISBN 9780300134605 .
OCLC 192003268 .
Vitruvius . De architectura. 1:2.9.1.
* ^ Pliny . Natural History.
* Feirer, John L. (1988). Cabinetmaking and Millwork. Mission Hills
California: Glencoe Publishing. ISBN 0-02-675950-0 .
* Frid, Tage (1979).
Tage Frid Teaches Woodworking. Newton,
Connecticut: Taunton Press. ISBN 0-918804-03-5 .
* Joyce, Edward (1987). Encyclopedia of
Furniture Making. revised
and expanded by Alan Peters. New York: Sterling Publishing Co. ISBN
* Roubo, André Jacob (1769–1784). The Art of the Joiner. Paris:
French Academy of Sciences .
* Naylor, Andrew. A review of wood machining literature with a
special focus on sawing. BioRes, April 2013