Knives have been used as eating utensils since prehistoric times. However, Confucius expressed in one of his numerous quotable quotations: “The honorable and upright man keeps well away from both the slaughterhouse and the kitchen. And he allows no knives on his table.” it is only in fairly recent times that knives have been designed for table use.
Chopsticks were developed about 5,000 years ago in China. By 500 AD, chopsticks had spread to Japan, Vietnam and Korea. Early Japanese chopsticks were used strictly for religious ceremonies, and were made from one piece of bamboo joined at the top, like tweezers. Contrary to the frequent Western misconception, Thais do not commonly use chopsticks.
The fork dates back to the Greeks as an aid to carving meat; but didn't arrive in England as an eating utencil until 1608. The fork was considered decadent and blasphemous when it was introduced to Venetian society in the 11th century. The English ridiculed forks as being effeminate and unnecessary. "Why should a person need a fork when God had given him hands?"