School is and has always been a cruel, class-divided place. Nowadays you are judged by your clothes and trainers but back in the day your pen told all about you.

If your parents were well-to-do, you probably had a Conway Stewart. If they were merely comfortably off you would have a Blackbird or possibly a flashy Burnham. If your parents were just getting by, with nothing much to spare, your pen would be a Platignum. If, however, they were in direst poverty and you lived on water and bread and dripping, you would have a Tallon but you would hide it as best you could.
Platignums tended to fail quite often but Tallons were misery in plastic. It was quite unusual for a Tallon to lay anything other than a blot on paper. A very, very good one might write somewhat acceptably for a day or two; none lasted as long as a week.

I might be exaggerating a little there but they were pretty foul pens. I have one here that I bought in one of my moments of extreme madness. It’s a button filler with imitation gold trim and a plated steel nib. As well as all the other faults Tallons were not durable. This one has a broken tine, rendering it useless.
Here it is in all its splendour. I didn’t bother cleaning it up but I will hang onto it as a suitable nib may come my way one day and then I can have the only working Tallon in this universe or any other.



8 thoughts on “Tallon

  1. yes, interesting item, but either my memory going or this not part of my mis-spent youth:) – I recall Platignums, CS, Osmiroids and the Parkers that a council house kid couldn’t afford, but not this name. Don’t recall seeing one on my pen hunting trips either – perhaps they’re now as rare as hens teeth and worth a fortune!! There’s that Parker looking arrow creeping in again, and the blue is a bit lurid.
    Bet the Georgians would have given their eye teeth for one nonetheless – all that sharpening of goose quills can soon lose its novelty.

    Do we know who made the Tallon, or is that the name of the company?

    1. Tallon is the name of the company. Under various ownership it was around from 1949 to 1975 and was based at different times in Bristol and London*.

      They are not common now, simply because they were so cheaply made. Their survival rate is very poor.

      *Stephen Hull: The English Fountain Pen Industry 1875 – 1975

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