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My Montegrappa Botanist's Pen And An Orchid, Three Years Later


fpupulin
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Botany is not a quick science. The job of giving a face and a name to the diversity of plants that populate our planet is made up of patient checks and comparisons with what has already been discovered and revealed to science in the nearly 280 years of history of modern botany. We already know a little less than 400 thousand species of plants and every year another 2000 recently discovered are added to the list. Almost 10% of all plants with flowers are orchids, and the comparison work with the thousands of existing names, frequently published in old and difficult to find journals and books, with museum specimens not always in the ideal conditions for their study, takes time.

 

Almost exactly three years ago, on the pages of this same forum, I wrote about how you can use a fountain pen, among many other things, also to describe a new species of orchid, and not only in words, but also by tracing on a sheet its unique and distinctive characters (you can read it here). A couple of photographs showed my notebook and my Montegrappa Extra 1930 in Black Bamboo celluloid (the botanist's perfect pen, with that air of a linfous plant shoot) struggling with the first draft of description of a new orchid species from Costa Rica: Dichaea auriculata, this was the name that could be read noted in the notebook.

 

fpn_1587566765__montegrappa_extra_1930_b

 

Three years later, that name finally became real in the baptismal deed of the new species (which botanists cryptically call a "protologue"), published this April in the scientific journal Blumea, an international journal on the biodiversity, evolution and biogeography of plants, published by the National Herbarium of the Netherlands. On the pages of the journal you can read the short Latin phrases written initially in pen, and observe the drawing whose details had been sketched with the fountain pen in my notebook.

 

fpn_1587564753__montegrappa_extra_1930_b

 

And here it is again, my dear Montegrappa Extra 1930 "Acque del Sile", with the old notebook I had in use three years ago and with the new one, which I have been using these days. Not much has changed in these three years: a few more pens, a few more publications, a few more years old ...

fpn_1587564804__montegrappa_extra_1930_b

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Dear Franco,

 

What a great story! Congratulations on lending your name to such a beautiful thing.

 

I am a little envious that you work in a field where your fountain pens can occupy such a salient role. For me, it is always a matter of making excuses to use my pens instead of the computer.

 

And as always, your writing and drawings are things to aspire to! Personally I am awaiting a Montegrappa Extra 1930 Black Bamboo in the mail tomorrow. Maybe it will come with built-in talent for using it....

 

 

- P.

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Dear Franco,

What a great story! Congratulations on lending your name to such a beautiful thing.

I am a little envious that you work in a field where your fountain pens can occupy such a salient role. For me, it is always a matter of making excuses to use my pens instead of the computer.

And as always, your writing and drawings are things to aspire to! Personally I am awaiting a Montegrappa Extra 1930 Black Bamboo in the mail tomorrow. Maybe it will come with built-in talent for using it....

 

- P.

Dear Arcadian, years ago I discovered that writing by hand was a way to focus on my ideas. With no copy and paste, you just have to think a bit clearer what you want to say. If you like photography, you can compare handwriting and computer writing to analogic and digital photography. Digital photography is a tremendously helpful tool, but in most cases a digital camera made you less selective when shooting, with the excuse tat you will be selective choosing the best shots later at the desktop, something that almost never happens. So, thousands of shots are simply buried into the PC, to never be seen again.

 

Recently, looking at some old roll of Fuji Velvia (a notoriously difficult film to shot), I was blown by the extremely high number of shots that were correct both as to exposure and framing. I was just more selective before, rather than after...

 

I can imagine your excitement waiting for the Bamboo Black Extra 1930. In my opinion, the Bamboo Black and the Black and White are the more refined celluloids of the entire series, but with the latter you have to be lucky, as in several examples that I saw the pattern was a bit too crazy. I never saw a Bamboo Black that was less than perfect in her pattern, however.

 

Which nib did you choose?

 

Please do not forget to post photos of your incoming beauty!

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