What is the name given to a judge’s hammer? The official name given to the hammer a judge uses in court is gavel. Gavel is that small wooden hammer that a judge or magistrate uses in a court room in order to get people’s attention or to emphasize on something that he has said.
It is not only judges that use the gavel. Other presiding officers make use of the gavel too. For instance a chairman in charge of a meeting uses it. Also an auctioneer during an auction makes use of the gavel to tell that a particular item has been sold to the final bidder.
The wooden plate that a judge or magistrate pounds the gavel on is called the ‘Sounding Block’. This is the reason why both are called ‘Gavel and Block’.
The sounding block helps in enhancing the sound quality of the gavel so that all who are present can hear it and pay attention to what is being said. The gavel, although a simple tool made of nothing other than hardwood is a very important thing. It is a symbol of authority and is handled with great care. As simple as this tool is, it possesses immense power.
When it is sounded in a courtroom for example, everybody is suddenly obedient. People know the power it has and dare not ignore it. Ignoring it could easily land someone in prison for contempt of court.
The gavel, like was said from above is not only used in the courtrooms, but despite this it is synonymous with the courts. And it is mainly used as a symbol for the entire judiciary system.