Parts of a whip

The POPPER or CRACKER is string or thread that has a bushy end that makes the pop.

The FALL is a single strip of leather (the narrower the better).

The THONG is 8-16 strips of leather woven around a center (which in a good whip is actually another mini-whip woven of 4-8 strips of leather)

The HANDLE differs between styles of whips (Stockwhip, Bullwhip, etc.) usually either a wooden handle or flexible cane stick, either bare or wrapped in leather.


The BELLY is what is inside the braided thong. In a good whip this will itself be braided leather, but in a cheaper whip it may be strips of leather or rawhide, or even rope or paper.

The KNOT is the knob on the end of the handle.

One Response to Terminology

  1. 7th Sin says:

    Hi Steve, Andrew,

    Nice redesign of the site. About the terminology though, I think perhaps you should go in a bit more detail about the belly. Something like:
    “In a decent whip the core of the whip is a shotbag. This is essentially a tapered little bag filled with buckshot. The shotbag is traditionally covered with a strip of leather. A mantle is plaited over that strip of leather and yet another strip of leather is added. This is the belly of the beast…
    Finally another layer of leather is plaited over the belly in order to finish the whip. On the more elaborate whips this is done with an intricate plaiting pattern. On some whips the layers of leather are replaced with another plaited layer which allows for a slightly suppler whip.


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