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Help To Id Pen In 1939 Photo

id

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10 replies to this topic

#1 bizhe

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Posted 29 August 2016 - 12:30

This is a photograph of Arthur Waley, a translator of Chinese and Japanese texts, dated to 1939. Can anyone identify the right-hand pen in his pocket?

 

Thanks!

 

 

Attached Images

  • waley.jpg


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#2 Ernst Bitterman

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Posted 30 August 2016 - 21:47

There's something about the shape of it that makes me think of German pens of the '30s, but I can't find a precise match for it in images of known contemporary German pens.  The closest I could find was this Danish-made Montblanc, but that doesn't mean Mr. Waley is indeed a Montblanc owner-- I've got some ten-cent US pens that you'd take for a Sheaffer Balance in a photo like that.


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Oh, good heavens. He's got a blog now, too.

 

fpn_1465330536__hwabutton.jpg

 


#3 bizhe

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Posted 31 August 2016 - 03:02

Thank you. I was thinking along the lines of Pelikan 100, but this sheds some interesting light.

 

Unfortunately I do not have a higher resolution photo.

 

It looks like the clip starts below the clip ring.

 

Any other clues?



#4 Dickkooty2

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Posted 31 August 2016 - 03:27

This is just pure speculation. I don't mean to suggest that I know anything (and many would say a hearty 'amen'). But here is a thought:

 

Suppose it is not a pen? If the left-hand writing instrument is a pen and the cap certainly looks like a pen cap of the Big Red type, the unknown instrument on the right might be a pencil.

 

A lot of pencil tops looked like this in the 30's. I have a number of FENDS that bear a resemblance

 

usus_multipencil_2_zpsetld0cvm.jpg

 

This is a German  USUS of the period. In this case, it as a four-color grip=type lead holder and was probably made for them by FEND.

 

I also point out the startling resemblance of Haley, the noted translator of classical Chinese and Japanese poetry, to Basil Rathbone, noted stage and screen actor.

tumblr_static___kgrhqr__oge9c080iq9bpy14



#5 Sandy Fry

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Posted 31 August 2016 - 10:28

Dickkooty may be on to something. I found this little snippet:

 

"My earliest recollections of Arthur depict him against the background of Hill House, Wimbledon, after we had left London in 1896. . . I recall that on our arrival at Wimbledon, before our unpacking was complete, our nurse organised tea in the nursery and could find no spoons. Arthur saved the situation by producing a pencil from his pocket and suggesting we might stir our tea with it. Our nurse exclaimed, Why, Master Arthur carries a pencil everywhere - I expect he'll be a great author some day!"

 

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no good man will consent to lose but with his life.

#6 peterg

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Posted 31 August 2016 - 13:03

The left hand item is a clutch pencil. I have no idea what the right hand item is.



#7 zwack

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Posted 01 September 2016 - 03:28

Maybe a celluloid montblanc... I don't know but look at this one...

https://chatterleylu...l-fountain-pen/

Right time period, black cap above the clip, lighter colour below...

This is just guesswork.

#8 Dickkooty2

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Posted 01 September 2016 - 04:16

No! Your other right! As our platoon sgt used to say ...

 

I am looking at the pens in the pocket and reading the left to right view (head-on) as right to- left ... how the sitter would be sitting down and facing the camera. 

 

At any rate, i think the differences are pretty obvious: A big pen with a major top and a pencil with a lot of stuff going on.



#9 bizhe

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Posted 01 September 2016 - 04:52

Sorry, by right-hand, I was referring to the pen. The pencil also shows to be more interesting than I expected.

 

And thanks Sandy Fry for digging up that quote.


Edited by bizhe, 01 September 2016 - 04:54.


#10 hankjgg

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Posted 03 September 2016 - 04:17

finial looks like it could be a Pelikan, clip looks correct for a Pelikan as well.

 

pelikan.png



#11 zwack

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Posted 03 September 2016 - 16:26

There are some Pelikans of that period with a dark finial and lighter cap below the clip band. The Pelikan finial looks a bit long to me (but the montblamc too short).

Given that we are looking at a 1" or so length of pen in a tiny detail in a black and white photo, I think we will be unlikely to get much closer than any of these guesses.





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