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The Journey from Reed’s to Fountain Pens. The Indian Story

Ink the Moment, Cherish the memories


Fountain pens, those elegant and precision-crafted writing instruments, have a history as rich and intricate as the strokes they produce. As we journey through time with Makoba, your trusted destination for all things fountain pens in India, we unravel the remarkable story of how these timeless tools evolved from humble beginnings to becoming symbols of artistry and refinement, deeply ingrained in the Indian writing culture.

Earliest known use of reeds is evident from the discovery of the Gandhāran Buddhist Manuscripts from Gandhara in Afghanistan. These manuscripts date back to 1st century BCE to 3rd Century CE. I assume the scripture was written using reeds. The known introduction of Guill pens happened in 17th Century Germany.


Birth of the Fountain Pen:

The known roots of the fountain pen can be traced back to ancient civilizations. However, it wasn't until the 17th century that the concept truly took shape. In 1636, the German inventor Daniel Schwenter described a pen made with quill and a mechanism to store ink for continuous flow, a concept that laid the foundation for what we now know as the fountain pen.


Early Innovations:

Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, inventors in Europe and beyond made incremental improvements to fountain pen design. These early pens featured various filling mechanisms, including eyedropper systems, which allowed writers to carry ink within the pen's barrel. Yet, they often proved unreliable and prone to leaking.


The Birth of Modern Fountain Pens:

The true breakthrough in fountain pen technology came in the 19th century. In 1884, American inventor Lewis Waterman patented a fountain pen with a capillary feed system that prevented ink from spilling and provided a consistent flow. This invention revolutionized writing and paved the way for the modern fountain pen.


Fountain Pens Arrive in India:

With the British Empire's influence in India, fountain pens began making their way to the subcontinent in the late 19th century. The reliability and elegance of fountain pens resonated with scholars, writers, and professionals across the country. By the early 20th century, fountain pens had firmly established themselves as the writing instrument of choice for those seeking both precision and style.


Indian Fountain Pen Brands:

India's journey with fountain pens didn't stop at mere adoption; it extended to craftsmanship and innovation. Iconic Indian handmade fountain pen brands like Ratnamson, Guider & Ranga emerged, producing fountain pens that rivalled their international counterparts. These brands played a crucial role in shaping India's fountain pen culture. I would further add, Ratnamson pen was the first swadeshi pen brand, still in existence to have started the revolution in Indian continent and made an indelible impression on generations to come.

In-fact, the legacy of Indian handmade fountain pens has just started booming. We can hypothetically divide the Indian handmade fountain pen saga in two, before and after the start of this millennium.

Before 2000, India had only the handful manufacturers as mentioned above. Post 2000 was the evolution of the Indian handmade pen industry in India. The explosive growth of use of fountain pens worldwide including in India, gave birth to many new pen brands like Magna Carta, Click, Lotus, Sri Krishna, Urushi Studio and many many more.  (This list is non exhaustive and contains only some popular brand names)



Luxury and Craftsmanship – Made in India:

Luxury fountain pens in India epitomize the marriage of artistry and function. Meticulously handcrafted with exquisite materials, these pens showcase India's dedication to precision and craftsmanship. Makoba, as the best pen store in India, proudly curates a selection of these artistic marvels for discerning collectors and connoisseurs.


Luxury and Craftsmanship – From around the World:

Fountain pens continue to hold a special place in contemporary India. They aren't just writing tools; they're symbols of elegance, self-expression, and heritage. Enthusiasts across the nation explore a wide range of fountain pens, from affordable options to luxury treasures.

There is no dearth of Imported Luxury fountain pen brands in India. In-fact going by the trend, India seems to be the world capital of Fountain Pen consumption. Indian Pen connoisseur’s have access to the best of the best and exquisite fountain pens from around the world. Makoba, a leading fountain pen store, is home to close to 50+ International brands. Apart from dealership of all prominent brands, we have the largest basket of Imported Brands currently in India. Popular and revered fountain pen brands like Namiki, Montegrappa, Aurora, Scribo, Leonardo, Esterbrook, Tibaldi & Taccia are Imported and Marketed by Makoba.



As we trace the journey of fountain pens from their inception to their enduring influence in India, we gain a deeper appreciation for these remarkable writing instruments.

Join us at Makoba as we celebrate the artistry, history, and elegance of fountain pens, inviting you to be part of this timeless tradition.


At Makoba, Fountain pens is a way of life for each of our team members.

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The Journey from Reed’s to Fountain Pens. The Indian Story