pointed implement used in writing or drawing to apply ink
or a similar colored fluid to any surface, such as paper. Various kinds of pens have been used since ancient times. Reeds that were slit or frayed at the end were used in antiquity; similar pens, usually made of bamboo, are commonly employed in Asia today. In ancient Greece and Rome much writing was done by scratching the wax coating of a tablet with a stylus, or style—a pointed implement whose blunt end was used to make erasures by smoothing the wax. Quills were introduced early in the Middle Ages and continued to be the main writing device until the mid-19th cent. Plucked from live birds (usually geese), the quills were treated with heat and shaped with a penknife, and they required frequent sharpening. Although metal pens were known to the Romans, and a few had been made in Europe in the 18th cent., a cheap, efficient slip-in nib did not come into common use until Josiah Mason improved existing models and began large-scale production in 1828 at Birmingham, England. The fountain pen, which feeds ink to the pen point from a reservoir, was first successfully produced on a commercial scale in the 1880s. The ball-point pen, introduced c.1944, offered several advantages over the fountain pen. Tipped with a ball bearing that rolls a gelatinous instant-drying ink onto paper, the ball-point pen contains a longer-lasting supply of ink than the fountain pen and is less likely to leak. Although soft-tip pens had been used in ancient times (the Egyptians made soft-tip pens from rushes c.4000 B.C., and the Chinese later used hair-tip pens), it was not until the 1950s that felt-tip markers came into fairly common use in the United States. By the 1960s felt-tip markers had been largely replaced by fiber-tip markers. These are made of such materials as nylon and plastic, are available in a wide variety of colors, and are capable of marking any surface, including plastic and glass.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2022, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.
in graphic art. (1) An implement for drawing with ink or a similar fluid (for example, india ink). A pen is made of metal, feathers, or cane.
(2) The technique of drawing in pen. Such drawings consist of broken lines or hatches.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
What does it mean when you dream about a pen?
A pen or a pencil can represent male sexuality; it can also represent communication or a desire to communicate. The symbol might also be referring to an idiom, such as “pen pusher,” “the pen is mightier than the sword,” or to “pencil someone in.”
The Dream Encyclopedia, Second Edition © 2009 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.
A small place for confinement, storage, or protection.
A device for writing with ink.
The inner horny, feather-shaped, chitnous shell of a squid. Also known as gladius.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
A synonym for room
in a four-sided enclosure constructed of logs. Thus, a one-room log cabin is often called a single-pen cabin
, and a dogtrot cabin (consisting of two single-room cabins) is often called a double-pen cabin.
2. An enclosure for animals; for example, a pigpen.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
the long horny internal shell of a squid
a dock for servicing submarines, esp one having a bombproof roof
a female swan
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
penA stylus used to write and draw. See stylus, pen-based computing and pen-enabled app.
Copyright © 1981-2019 by The Computer Language Company Inc. All Rights reserved. THIS DEFINITION IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. All other reproduction is strictly prohibited without permission from the publisher.
Having a pen or a pencil in your dream may be symbolic of your need to communicate with yourself or others. Our ability to communicate through written language is a vitally important and necessary part of life. When we take our pen and write a check to pay bills, it can still be considered a form of communication! Writing is a form of self-expression, providing us with a way to think and express our thoughts. Dreams with writing tools in them may be an encouragement for you to write and communicate. Whether you need to communicate with yourself or others, in private or professional life, is up to you to determine.
Bedside Dream Dictionary by Silvana Amar Copyright © 2007 by Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.