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Author Topic: Miller's Economic Inkwell  (Read 1070 times)

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Offline Anne E.B.

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Miller's Economic Inkwell
« on: November 27, 2005, 12:05:50 PM »
Just came across this strange looking object this morning.  I thought it was some strange sort of insulator at first.  It has MILLER'S ECONOMIC INKWELL impressed around the top.  There is a small oval opening, presumably for a pen nib to be placed in (?) or more likely a quill (?), as the opening is quite small.
Inside there are two small balls which seem to be quite lightweight, and looking as if they are made from pumice stone.  Not sure what these are for.   I'm not sure if its all in one piece or whether the top would have come off at one time, but it appears fixed.  Bit of a mystery why it has such a high dome. It makes a great paperweight.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y195/glassie/inkwell001.jpg
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y195/glassie/inkwell002.jpg


Does anyone know about its origins, age or how it would have been used?  I've googled Miller's inkwells without success and there is nothing like it on eBay.  Unfortunately it has a hairline crack from one side to the other, but it seems quite sturdy.  

A really interesting piece - looks quite old :P

Anne E.B. :wink:
Anne E.B

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Offline paradisetrader

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Miller's Economic Inkwell
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2005, 07:34:43 PM »
Hi Anne
Im thinking it works a bit like a water cooler --- the ink being stored in the dome and only allowed to seep down a small amount at a time by the pumice ?
Pete

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Offline Max

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Miller's Economic Inkwell
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2005, 07:57:22 PM »
Wellll, ink used to be ground.  I wonder if the top fits inside the body of the piece?  Maybe it was turned over and used as the ink receptacle?

I think the bottom might be for keeping the pumice in.  The parchment would be levelled off with a pumice before writing anything.

Had to check that on Google, thought I remembered it, and found a little bit about it on there.

Fascinating object Anne!   :D
I am not a man

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Offline chuggy

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Miller's Economic Inkwell
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2005, 08:39:24 PM »
Keeping pumice in the bottom sounds distinctly unwise to me.
Paul
There is no distance on earth as far away as yesterday.

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Offline Anne E.B.

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Miller's Economic Inkwell
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2005, 08:54:58 PM »
Thanks Peter and Max  for your comments :P   You've both given me lots to think about.  :idea:  

The top domed section wouldn't fit in the bottom section as a receptacle for the ink, because it is about three quarters of an inch longer.  

Using a pumice stone to level off parchment might help date it.  I'm more than sure that the two pea size balls are in fact pumice stones.  They are a light grey colour and have what looks like tiny gritty specks.

I'll do some more googling :shock:  

Give me a flamin' Biro any day :roll:

Anne E.B. :wink:
Anne E.B

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