Anvil is a massive block of iron, usually with two ends, used as a surface for the modeling of metal objects and tools.The anvil was used to forge metal objects for centuries, however from the 19th century onwards it began to fall into disuse among blacksmiths, with the intensification of new tools brought by the Industrial Revolution.Until the 19th century, the anvil was widely used for the production of armor, horseshoes for horses and weapons in general, such as swords, spears, axes, etc. Currently, anvils are still used, but by a restricted group of blacksmiths and plastic artists who work with metals as raw materials for their works of art.

In anatomy, the anvil is the name of the second ossicle of the middle ear, which makes up the so-called auditory membrane, together with the hammer, the stirrup and the auditory tube. In the middle ear is where the eardrum is located, the part of the hearing responsible for transmitting sound waves to the auditory nerve.

Hammer and anvil

The popular saying be between the hammer and the anvil is commonly used to express the condition of someone who is between two opposing positions, situations or decisions, and in either alternative the individual will be penalized or victimized.

The metallurgy is a craft that dates back to prehistoric times. The ability to manipulate metals is the most used criterion to determine historical periods, due to the importance that their influence causes in the organization and advancement of agricultural and engineering techniques.

Today, with industrialization on a scale, many pieces of equipment are produced in a sectored manner, which can make many laymen on the subject believe that the anvil is already an outdated tool. And that’s not it!

Anvils have become more portable and versatile equipment for metallurgy professionals and even hobbyists. They are far from being just an object that the drawings shoot at the head of others or reference of heavy metal bands.

The function of the anvil

The anvil is an instrument of versatility; its flat surface allows the work on the molding of a series of molten metals, which acquire a malleable consistency for the metallurgist to give various forms to the equipment he produces.The solid metal body is able to distribute the energy of the work developed on the part, reducing the impact received by the operator and facilitating the handling of the tools. Thanks to the tempered metal surface, the anvil does not crack as it is used.

The anatomy of the item allows for several techniques. On the flat surface, the cast metal parts can be molded to their thickness, the more curved and softer edges facilitate curvature, the tapered “horn” of the tip is ideal for working more elaborate details, elongations and cuts without damaging the material, for example be softer.