I have on offer an attractive silverplate travel ink well. The ink well is in the shape of a Parrot. The metal has wonderful embossed feather detail and life-like eyes. The hinge is in good working order. This piece is in excellent condition for its age. A splendid desk top accessory.
Dimensions: 5cm x 5.4cm
In the 17th century, traveling with one’s own writing materials became a necessity for the literate and the travelers’ well was introduced. For the affluent, the inkwell was housed in a box with host of other necessities, including paper, quill pens, ink, sewing notions, medications and toiletries.
Inkwells would also highlight the class distinctions so evident in earlier times. It was considered undignified for an aristocrat to do his own writing and a scrivener would fulfill the duties of correspondence. By the end of the 16th century, the well-to-do began handling their own correspondence and the elaborate silver inkstand would become a “necessary” item. These were often made in the shape of a box and contained items beyond the inkpot, including a wafer box for paste wafers (used to seal letters) and a sander or pounce pot. The sander held powdered gum sandarac, a fine sand which was sprinkled on the unglazed paper to prevent smearing. The sand would be poured back into the pounce pot once the ink was dry, ready for reuse. Many boxes were also fitted with a drawer for the storage of quills and sealing wax.