What is Leuku or Sami Knife?

Traditional Sami camp knives are called Leuku, and they are indigenous to Scandinavia’s far north. You can use it to butcher game, build shelter, skin cows, and chop wood. They are large, heavy knives designed for use in the wilderness.

This blog contains relevant information that will make you appreciate the blade more.



In northern Scandinavia, including the aforementioned four regions, the Samis are the indigenous folks. Their relationship with the animals is close as they are itinerant reindeer-herders. Nature has always been a treasure to the Laplanders of northern Europe.

They understood the necessity of a knife because of this way of life. Their knives, however, came in several types. Women and men today still carry multiple knives despite this fact.

There is one called Puukko that has a blade that is approximately four inches long that is suitable for light tasks. Its blade can be between 7 and 18 inches long, which makes it a big, heavy one for tough tasks. 

Also, the Sami people are believed to have made Leuku knives, which evolved from the Viking seaxes and the Väkipuukkos in Finland. Around 400-700 A.D., after the migration period ended, they entered the Scandinavian and Baltic cape with steel handling techniques.

This knife was even used therapeutically by ancient Sami tribes. As a bleeding stopper, it was often used to treat boils and warts. Even children as young as 8 and 10 used to have their first knife because of the cultural relationship with this weapon.



A robust, long, and wide blade distinguishes this knife. Its sharp front is called mekko.

The steel used in making the blade was either hand-forged or imported from India and Persia. The blade edge is made of laminated iron with the Scandinavian grind, which emphasizes durability and strength. If you notice on the surface of the steel, you will see that it has visible marks, which are a result of grinding and folding together.


The handle is wide, and the pommel or cross guard projects from the back of the blade where your hand would be resting. Another thing that distinguishes this knife from others is its thickness. It was made with a sectioned steel covering each side of the blade which was riveted into place using a cold chisel and hammer.


A non-crossguard handle carries the tang. Knives with a Nordic tang or stick are most common. Simply put, the tang is narrower than the blade and shrinks downward so that the handle fits comfortably over it. Brass rivets are used to attach the handle to the tang.  


It cuts small trees, de-limbs, clears brush, makes shelters, butchers, and breaks bones, and is excellent for light to heavy chores. As far as camping chores go, it should take care of them all.

Lapland’s herders, hunters, and fishermen rely on Sami and Leuku knives for today’s survival. When their owners are stuck in harsh wilderness conditions, they are reliable survival tools.

Final Verdict

In a nutshell, this knife is a multifunctional tool with parts that come together for the best knife in the world. It is strong, durable, and efficient which makes it your best choice when you want to survive outdoors.

It has been tried and tested in Scandinavian countries by herders or hunters for centuries.

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