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Origins of door knockers A door knocker is an item of door furniture that allows people outside a house to alert those inside to their presence. It has a part fixed to the door and a part (usually metal) which is attached to the door by a hinge that is lifted and used to strike a plate fitted to the door making a noise. The strike plate if present would be supplied and fitted with the knocker. Door knockers are often ornate but may be no more than a simple fitting with a metal bob or ring. Many older period houses and mansions often have intricate knockers in the shape of human heads or mythical beasts. The earlier designs were based on statues that would stand in front of ancient Greek houses. These statues were created with distorted grotesque features and were thought to be used to ward of malignant spirits and witches.
Different manufacturers describe them as Grecian Urns or Victorian Urns. Each appears to have some merit. It is possible that the relationship to eras revolves around the designs used as each period features its own distinctive style of ornamentation. Some are embellished with flower patterns while others have leaves and feathers. Among my personal favorites being an engraver is the old standard swirling vine pattern that generally seems to fit the urn door knocker form well. I have even come across them adorned with cherubs and angels.
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Some classic door knocker designs are installed in such a manner that holes are drilled through the door and a hardware piece from the inside holds the knocker in its place. Some classic knocker designs do not need to have the holes drilled through the door as these are instead screwed into the surface of the doors exterior. Traditional door knockers serve both practical and decorative purposes however it best helps to distinguish your house from the neighbors. You need to know that its always the door that the visitor first sees therefore why not make your doors look classy and extra special through the installation of these lovely pieces? I devote a great deal of time studying door knockers.