Pen of the Day: Parker 51 Double Jewel


I think Bleu Nuit is a great match.

I love the name, which is so beautiful to say, and which always makes me think of René Magritte’s The Empire of Lights paintings.

But I also like the ink’s color, which is slightly pale and very traditional-looking.  That seems perfect for my mother’s old pen.

And I like how easily J. Herbin inks clean out of a pen.  Easy-to-clean ink is necessary with a vacumatic filler like this 51.

But what makes Bleu Nuit such a great match for my 51 is that it’s a slightly dry ink, and this 51 is a wet writer. A perfect pair.


Here’s the dumb old cap, with its dents and bruises.  And I don’t care — that makes it my favorite part of the pen. Each time I use the pen, I think: look here, my mother used this.

I’m not a huge fan of dents in general.  But I’m quite familiar with them.  They run in the family.  In the past few months, my daughter has dented the fender and bumper of my car.  And I just dented the edge of my metal laptop case in three really noticeable places after dropping the laptop off an exercise cycle (bonk, bonk, clank, ugh).

See how bad for you exercise is?  And how no female in my family should ever be trusted with anything valuable of yours?

But the 51 dents put those in perspective.  Neither the car nor the laptop will be operable in sixty-nine years. Nor will I.  But this fountain pen?  I figure my daughter, the car denter, might be using this then.  And I’m sure I’ll have inflicted my own damage in the meantime.  But I bet she’ll marvel at it, too.

One thought on “Pen of the Day: Parker 51 Double Jewel

  1. This was beautiful – the thought, the words, all of it! And the little surprise of how it starts out as a regular Pen Of The Day post and then becomes so much more 🙂

    And bonus for me: Herbin Bleu Nuit has been my standard writing ink for many years now, so it was nice to see it. I think I like it better in this pen; mine is a pretty wet M nib, and I think it maybe gets too dark. I will try it with a finer nib soon!


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