Share your favorites on Show & Tell

Solid 15ct Gold Propelling Pencil

In Office > Pencils > Show & Tell and Pens > Gold Pens > Show & Tell.
Pens214 of 391Victorian Sterling Silver PencilVictorian pencils in Sterling Silver
Love it
Like it

Woman34Woman34 loves this.
Moonstonelover21Moonstonelover21 loves this.
vetraio50vetraio50 loves this.
kerry10456kerry10456 loves this.
walksoftlywalksoftly loves this.
miKKoChristmas11miKKoChristmas11 loves this.
bratjddbratjdd loves this.
robinjrobinj loves this.
pickrknowspickrknows loves this.
inkyinky loves this.
See 8 more
Add to collection

Please create an account, or Log in here

If you don't have an account, create one here.

Create a Show & TellReport as inappropriate

Posted 5 years ago


(51 items)

A "Jewel in the Crown" of my collection! Strangely enough we do not know by who or when it was made. There is no Makers Mark, no Hallmarks, no nothing! All I know is that it came from the estate of a 98 year old lady in Herefordshire (England) and it belonged to her parents when they lived in that beautiful Georgian Spa Town of Bath. She recounted to her daughter (who sold it) that it had been "specially made" for her parents.

This propelling pencil has been very carefully tested, so as not to do irreparable damage, and it tests for at least 14 carat gold. As the "standard" most common in Victorian England was 15 carat, it is 99% certain to be 15ct. The construction and engraving is typically English Victorian and was probably made in Birmingham or Chester as the family had it's business and social "sphere" entirely in the Western reaches of England, which precludes London, the other centre of excellence for objects such as this. (Supposition based on circumstantial evidence)

Antique 15ct Gold propelling pencil and reversible dip pen. The double-ended section carrying the propelling pencil and dip pen, very crisply slides into and out of the body section with a well engineered interference fit. This whole section, which ever implement is chosen, then slides into the body using the slide ring decorated with the very finest worked acanthus leaves I have ever seen. It is an absolute tour-de-force of the jewellers skill. I had never handled such exquisite work! I saw it and just had to buy it. It has a striking un-engraved yellow/orange semi-precious stone seal on the finial in the shape of a double recurving shield. Extended Length is 13cm. Retracted Length is 9cm. Weight is 13.2g

The pencil tip is marked with an "M" which many people think denotes "Mordan" as the maker; as in Sampson Mordan. This is not true, it denotes the type of lead applicable to the pencil. It is true that this protocol or specification was laid down by Mordan in his Granted Patent, but it does not mean he made it, as many other Makers adopted his "standardisation of leads" system.

See my post below for the Patent that laid down the lead nomenclature:

See the 4th photo (the far right photo):


  1. Hems303 Hems303, 5 years ago
    Here's a live link to the Collectors Weekly post that in the 4th photo gives the Mordan Patent for his pencil design, but more importantly the widely, and quickly adopted standardisation for leads in English Victorian propelling pencils:
  2. inky inky, 5 years ago
    Beautiful Hems!...:-)
  3. Hems303 Hems303, 5 years ago
    Thanks mustangtony for your love it! Much appreciated. I like your newly posted early magazine advertisements...especially the Irish one! Must just go and make myself an Irish Coffee right now!...the power of the advert...even after all these years! LOL
  4. Hems303 Hems303, 5 years ago
    many thanks to vetraio50 and AR8Jason for the appreciation! (AR8Jason; I read your interview in the CW Feature this week on Masonic Collectables...Most impressive!)
  5. Hems303 Hems303, 5 years ago
    For all the kind support, I thank walksoftly, miKKoChristmas11, bratjdd, robinj, pickrknows, BELLIN68, mustangtony and last but never least; inky!

  6. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    Here is a link to my CW Post dealing with Lead Refills for Antique propelling pencils, especially Mordan examples:
  7. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    Kerry; Thanks for the "love", very kind of you!
  8. kerry10456 kerry10456, 4 years ago
    Steve, you're welcome,did they make these in "ivory" if so I might have one.
  9. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    Kerry & AR8Jason; sounds good, please post your ivory examples! The makers used alsorts of materials but the non-metal examples are quite rare by comparison, presumably because they were more fragile or perhaps less cherished years ago

  10. kerry10456 kerry10456, 4 years ago
    Kevin, I'll dig it out tomorrow , after I get home and post, looks like the same style tube, but missing the end(pencil) section
  11. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    AR8Jason & kerry10456; Did you manage to find your pencils?

    I took the trouble to have some (re-)valuations done before the holiday; just for info; this pencil/pen combo came in at: 185.00 GBP = 298.00 USD
  12. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    Yes, thanks Kevin, I did see your fine specimens and saved them into my CW "Collection", I don't think kerry has posted yet, and I think I wrongly thought you had some more "hidden away" :)
  13. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    I'm a pencil & "penaholic" and can't get enough.....must seek therapy this
  14. ralph ralph, 4 years ago
    i have one but it is a personal tooth pike.
  15. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    With regard to comments .14, .15 & .18 above: It is with regret that I point out that AR8Jason has deleted ALL his Collectors Weekly posts showcasing his beautiful and extensive collection of antique gold, silver pens and pencils. This has also caused ALL of his items we have put into our Collectors Weekly "Collections" to be no longer available.
  16. Hems303 Hems303, 4 years ago
    Hi Sean. I'm very well, weather is dreadful for spring (in England) just had a sudden, unexpected heavy snow storm that has brought everything to a standstill (as usual). So having a restful weekend tucked up in front of the fire posting on good old CW!

    Hope You & Yours are well!

    Best wishes from a very white and quiet Shropshire!


Want to post a comment?

Create an account or login in order to post a comment.