August 4, 2015 1 Comment
Wyvern remains the red-headed stepchild among British pens. Conway Stewart has an excellent website and a very informative book. Langs pens are very well covered in a website. Mabie Todd has an increasingly well-recorded and illustrated website. Poor old Wyvern, despite being an old established and prolific company, has nothing.
Sharon Cordwell brought this pen to my attention. I hadn’t seen one like it before and I searched the Internet and my various reference books without coming upon anything related to it. Because I am an idiot I had forgotten Stephen Hull’s masterly The English Fountain Pen Industry 1875 – 1975 in my search. I searched out the section on Wyvern and there it was: the No 7 was introduced in 1930 at a time of factory expansion in Leicester. Mottled hard rubber was still commonly used at that date, not quite having been replaced by celluloid.
It’s a delightful small pen, kitted out for a chain or ribbon to be hung ready for use by the Lady of the House. Such pens had been popular for 30 years by this date though thereafter they would become less and less common. Unfortunately the pen does not bear the heraldic Wyvern, a fire-breathing critter and the logo of the company, which they borrowed from the arms of Leicester where the factory was situated. It’s interesting to note that the barrel imprint carries a legend “Wyvern Pen Co London”. The company had an office and showroom there.
My gratitude to Sharon for permission to write about her pen, and for the photographs which I use here.