The little bearded figure Godfather Drosselmeier presents in The Nutcracker is probably what comes to mind when speaking of cracking walnuts, but this seemingly simple chore has in fact begat endless variations on the device. Dogs' heads, elephants' trunks, and clenched fists have all done duty as screw-type nutcrackers. Cast iron dragons, brass courtesans, and objects resembling surgical pincers have been employed among plier-type designs, as well as any number of plungers, levers, and gavelsnot to mention many, many versions of the traditional little fellow with the big mouth. Some are elegant in their simplicity, or their mechanical curiosity, while some are so delightfully fashioned they can only be considered works of art. This illustrated album presents nutcrackers and other nutty accessories in hundreds of color photographsmost are from Europe and America, made from the 15th century to the present.