A General History of Pencils


Researching a general history of pencils reveals how long this story is but also how recent it has become to its ending as a primary writing tool. Especially now that we have access to personal computers of all shapes and sizes for just about every task, pencils have become somewhat archaic for everyday use. But there is an exception to this rule.

Writing Tablets
history of pencils
Double Sided Old School Slate/Chalkboard-Ebay
Let’s go back a bit in the history of writing before pencils were available. I refer in fact primarily two types of writing systems.

Chalkboard One was only a few centuries ago using chalk as the writing instrument over slate as the surface. (Left)

Ancient Tablet Then the other was from ancient Rome using wax covered wood as the writing surface with a stylus as the writing instrument. (Below)

history of pencils

History of the Pencil This section is quoted from Wikipedia.

history of pencils

history of pencils

history of pencils

Special Pencils For everyday use the pencil is somewhat of a dinosaur. As mentioned earlier, the primary system is once again a tablet or a pad. But now it is a computer not slate, wood, wax or clay.

But in one situation, there is still a need and use for the pencil. This is in the area of drawing also known as art or illustration. In this area there are some very special pencils. For example, there is the Blackwing. The original ones are shown below costing $1,520 for a dozen.

original blackwing pencils 1Dozen Brand New – Eberhard Faber Blackwing 602 Pencils with Original Box Perfect Brand New $1,520.00 Extra 5% off with coupon or Best Offer + $8.00 shipping on Ebay

More About Pencils In future posts, there will be more information focusing on Blackwing 620, Staedtler, and Eberhard Faber.


Example of a wax tablet with Roman stylus
Slate School Writing Tablet | Chalk Teacher Student Classroom | Remote Learning
Cuneiform Writing: How Clay And Reeds Changed the World
1 Dozen Brand New – Eberhard Faber Blackwing 602 Pencils with Original Box Perfect
Definition and History-Wikipedia

Carpenter Pencil (Top and bottom image of this blog post)

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