While the Sumerians of Mesopotamia are often regarded as having invented the first genuine writing tools some five thousand years ago, writing instruments, like other kinds of technology, have experienced significant evolution throughout the course of history. An example of a historic writing implement that has been preserved and is still in use today is the quill pen, which is favoured by calligraphers and history fans alike. How did production of this wildly popular pen ever end, and what was the reason? Why not look into the history of quill pens? You never know what you could find out! Maybe you will pick up some interesting and novel information while you go. But when was the quill pen invented?
A Brief History of the Quill Pen
While the precise time of the quill pen’s development is unknown, it was widely used throughout the Middle Ages (which started in the sixth century A.D.). The exact moment of its inception is unknown, yet that hasn’t stopped it from lasting. The use of the quill was cutting edge technology that helped develop not just the written word but also society as a whole during its heyday.
The primary distinction between quill pens and reed pens is the materials used in their manufacturing. Bamboo or reed writing instruments are traditionally used. You’d need a specific carving technique and a length of whole reed of around 20 cm (less than 8 inches) in length. As reed pens didn’t last as long as other pens, scribes needed to be skilled at creating them. As reed pens were not as durable or capable of keeping a point for as long, the introduction of quill pens was much appreciated. The tip of a quill pen is durable and seldom has to be sharpened. Like modern pencils, pens may be used until there is hardly none left. Some calligraphers still choose quill pens over reed pens or metal pens due to the broader range of styles they can create with them.
Where Did Pencils Go When They Were Made of Steel?
Even though quill pens were more versatile and lasted longer, the fountain pen ultimately triumphed owing to its superior convenience. It was with the intention of helping writers and scribes multitask that Petrache Poenaru created the fountain pen in 1827. Half a century later, this device had been improved such that ink wouldn’t seep onto neighbouring pages.
With this shift, less privileged people had better access to writing materials, facilitating their education in this area. In spite of the fact that fountain pens weren’t created until the 19th century, many of our forebears continued to use quill pens and other dip pens well into the 1940s. The history of the fountain pen dates back almost a century.