Shiv (weapon)


Shiv (weapon)

"This article is about the knife-like weapon. For the location in , see Dominaria".

A shiv (from the Romani word "chiv") is a slang term for a sharp or pointed implement used as an improvised knife-like weapon. The shiv is the favored weapon of inmates in prisons across the world. It is infamous for its versatility - a shiv can be anything from a glass shard with cloth wrapped around one end to form a handle, to a razorblade stuck in the end of a toothbrush, to a sharpened spoon. Some inmates have even sharpened the ends of pork chop bones to make them into weapons.Fact|date=October 2007

A related term is shank. While the words are often used interchangeably, shank can specifically refer to a weapon fashioned from the metal shank of a prison-issued boot or shoe. Since inmates were able to fashion effective shivs out of metal shanks, many prisons no longer issue footwear with metal shanks.Fact|date=October 2007 "Shank" may also be used as a verb, to refer to stabbing someone with the weapon, as in, "to shank someone with a shiv". Another related term is the Scottish slang word, chib. To "chib" is to stab or slash with a sharp weapon. The weapon can also be called a chib, as noted in the Irvine Welsh novel Trainspotting.

Popular culture

*In Truman Capote's nonfiction novel "In Cold Blood", Dick Hickock fashioned a shiv out of a toilet brush while imprisoned in the hopes of stabbing the undersheriff and escaping to Colorado. However, it was soon discovered under his mattress and confiscated.

*The character Riddick in the films "Pitch Black" and "The Chronicles of Riddick" coined the term "shiv-happy". Shivs are a frequently used form of weapon in the video game, "" which is based upon the Riddick franchise.

*In the 2000 movie "Chopper", based on the life of famed Australian criminal and best-selling author Mark Brandon Read, the legendary crime figure stabs a fellow inmate (a character based on Keith Faure), killing him. It is unclear whether or not this actually took place as portrayed on screen.

*In the 2005/2006 Television show "Prison Break" shivs make various appearances throughout. In the HBO series "Oz", shivs are used frequently to commit murders, attack inmates, or for other uses.

*In the final episode of the series Seinfeld, Jerry is doing a stand-up routine in prison and makes the joke "I mean when I was a kid my mother wanted me to play in the yard. But of course she didn't have to worry about my next door neighbor Tommy sticking a shiv in my thigh."

*"The Daily Show" made light of the Cynthia McKinney's assault of a Capitol Policeman, part of which involved her throwing a cellphone at an officer, by saying that she was just showing off her new phone: The SHIV, by Motorola, in parody of the RAZR which was new at the time.

External links

* [http://www.designobserver.com/archives/shiv1.html Dangerous Beauty: The Art of the Shiv] Photos of 11 shivs.


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