page is dedicated to the Englishman Sir Edward Thomason (1769-1849)
who had the genial idea to design a corkscrew with double threads. The
principle is based on a right hand thread inner shaft inserted in a
left handed outer thread. More simply, when you open a bottle of wine,
you induce a rotating action to the handle to screw the worm into the
cork. But, what is happening when you have to remove the cork…
The ingenuity of
Thomason starts here: In place of stopping the rotating movement, you
continue rotating the same way and, surprise, the cork is removed from
the bottle neck. More than that, if you turn the handle counterclockwise,
the cork is ejected… No more delicate manipulations and no more
This amazing invention
called more commonly “double action or telescopic” was used
until beginning of the XX century. The way those items were manufactured
was of a high quality and English factories were highly known for that.
As of a simple
structure, or with a complex mechanism, the corkscrew is our companion
during feasts. . There is nothing more pleasant than opening a bottle
of wine and sharing unforgettable moments with close relatives, friends…
But extracting a cork is not always that easy. The “T”-corkscrew
requests an intensive effort.
After the patent
has come to its end, for instance 14 years later, the manufacturers
continued the making of the so called “Thomason”, let’s
quote: Dowler, James Heeley, Jones Rodgers, etc…
was, like the “King’s screw”, produced with an open
barrel with two or four pillars. Later, a model with a brass cylindrical
closed barrel was manufactured.
Some barrels were
quite sober and a crest, showing the lion and the unicorn, with the
motto “NE PLUS ULTRA” was added. The manufactures often
inserted their name on the crest.
Later, some variation
of the barrel appeared, and the barrels were decorated with floral or
gothic ornaments (see picture).
models, using the Thomason system are still manufactured nowadays.