i found this picture of these knives and really wanted to know more. their story is fascinating.
Knives with musical notes on the blades are known as notation knives. A notation is the written version of a physical process, such as the sound of music. Once it is written down it can be preserved and recreated. Sung at four different levels.They are the four parts Superius (Soprano) Countratenor (Alto), Tenor, and Bassus (Bass) to be sung simultaneously as in a hymn.
These knives are etched with notations expressing gratitude for a meal. On one side of the blade the inscription translates as, ‘The blessing of the table. May the three-in-one bless that which we are about to eat’, to be sung before the meal is taken. On the other side the notation gives thanks after the meal: ‘The saying of grace. We give thanks to you God for your generosity’. The point of the knife allows meat or bread to be skewered and offered to a fellow diner. Notation knives are extremely rare.
The interesting history of notation knives is explained here on YouTube and the music has been gloriously performed toward the end of the video. It’s only 5 minutes long . Well worth the time! https://youtu.be/-mai-7WUbBo
“those who wish to sing, always find a song.”
credits: Victoria and Albert Museum, AHRC, Flora Dennis, University of Sussex