Rosemary – That’s For Remembrance

I’ve written about the Rosemary before, mostly speculation about the very unusual name. The search box above will find previous blog entries on the subject.

It is in Hamlet, Act IV, Scene V, as Ophelia plans to end her short life, that the phrase occurs as she explains the symbolism of the flowers she gathers. For Shakespeare she had gone mad. Now we might say she suffered from clinical depression. It’s a famous scene, very sad and very beautiful.

This Rosemary pen isn’t sad but it is beautiful. I’ve seen many Rosemary pens and the design appears to have changed often.

This slender, clipless, mottled hard rubber pen is, I believe, a lady’s purse pen. Mottled hard rubber is always attractive and it sets off the 18 carat rolled gold band. The nib is small, warranted 14 carat gold. It’s a lovely pen made romantic by its Shakespearean tag.


12 thoughts on “Rosemary – That’s For Remembrance

  1. Deb, ….been lusting after one of these for yonks…but they go super quick ☹️

    Found a beautiful one yesterday , like yours, in a pouch with all sorts of ‘ladies’ accessories …and I was about to pull the trigger,

    Then noticed …the dreaded….WILL NOT POST TO AUSTRALIA.

    Luckily, I’m a patient man …..but , grrrrr

    1. Hi Rob,

      Buying one of those sets would be quite an expensive way to acquire what is really a fairly unremarkable pen! Other larger mottled Rosemary pens do come up reasonably often, but the bigger pochette sets are quite rare, if not particularly sought after. I used to own a mint 35 set, which included powder puff, mirror and comb along with a Dandy-sized pen in an extravagant moire-lined pouch. This was the most expensive in the range, costing 21/-. Next down was the 45 set in a smaller, simpler blue or green leather pochette, with pen, pencil, comb and mirror, costing 15/6. I have never seen a number 45 set in real life! Their cheapest pochette set, number 353, was the more familiar small red leather wallet housing just a Dinkie-sized pen and pencil, costing 11/6. It is hard to date these precisely because of the dearth of National Security advertising material, but generally the 35 and 45 sets would seem to be mid-late 1930s.

      Deb, I have pictures if you are interested!

      1. Perhaps for Deb’s sake I should make it clear that the pen in those pochette sets is not the same model as that pictured in the original post. The model included does though vary with age, and maybe some are more interesting than others.

      2. I think that Rob made it clear that the pen he wished to buy was the same as the one I have written about. The pen may be unremarkable to you but it attracted a great deal of admiration in Fountain Pen Geeks.

      3. I think maybe we are at cross purposes here, maybe Rob wasn’t looking at an original Rosemary pochette set after all. Suffice it to say I am not belittling your particular pen in any way.

    2. Hi Rob,
      If you are in Australia give me a call on 0400695596 and I’ll send you photos of my full collection of Rosemarys, with and without pouches. I live in Cairns and have a fair few for you to look at.

  2. Find someone in the UK who will send it on to you. A lot of sellers do not want the grief of overseas tracked delivery and claims against them on E-Bay

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