[Ads-l] ink pen

Amy West medievalist at W-STS.COM
Tue Dec 14 07:54:59 EST 2021


So, I've always understood the use of "ink pen" to be typical in 
varieties of American English with the PEN-PIN merger. But here's an 
instance of "ink pen" contrasting with quill:

https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/ink-pen-0016179

"An archaeologist excavating at an 11th century ringfort in Ireland has 
unearthed the oldest ink pen ever discovered in Ireland. . . . The ink 
pen features a hollowed bone barrel and a copper-alloy nib."

Disturbingly, the article author implies that fountain pens existed in 
the 11th century:

"Dip pens have no ink reservoir within the barrel, unlike the fountain 
pens and feather quills 
<https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-evolution-human-origins/native-american-art-0010736> 
that were much more popular in the 11th century." That simply ain't so. 
There were the prototypes in its development from the 15th-18th century, 
but it wasn't until the 19th c. that fountain pens became popular.

(And FYI, quill pens would have all or all but the top-most feathers 
stripped from them.)

---Amy West

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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