Montblanc Writers Edition:  An Homage to Jane Austen

by Pressroom

Explore the literary universe of Jane Austen through a limited edition series of writing instruments created by Montblanc to spotlight writers who shaped world literature

One of Britain’s most celebrated novelists, Jane Austen was deft in sketching her characters, with acute social observation and wit. Her written works, including Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, and Persuasion continue to be read and admired centuries later today. Translated into different languages, and adapted into films and festivals worldwide, her legacy lives on.

Writing culture and the art of the written word continue to inspire and fascinate, even in the digital era. Montblanc revisits this prolific writer’s legacy with the Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen collection. Each writing instrument in the four editions represents a significant passion of Austen’s, revealing different aspects of the author’s life and work by covering significant locations such as her house and the countryside, her love for travel, and the world of balls featured in her stories. No detail is spared in the design narrative:

  • The shape of all four editions was inspired by the wax seal that Austen used for the estimated 3,000 letters she wrote during her lifetime
  • The cap top of three of these editions feature the words “By a Lady”, reflecting how her first published novel, Sense and Sensibility, was originally anonymously signed, while the fourth edition reveals her real name
  • The design on the nib portrays the silhouette of Jane Austen in a style reminiscent of shadow portraits from the Regency and Victorian eras
  • The clip shape draws inspiration from the band of a reticule, a ladies’ bag style from the Regency era

Each of the four editions also embody unique design features that pay tribute to Jane Austen’s life and her works.

Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen – Limited Edition

The Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen Limited Edition captures the writer’s life in the countryside and her love for nature, apparent in the many pivotal scenes of her novels. 

This edition is available as a fountain pen, rollerball pen and ballpoint pen. On the solid Au 750 rhodium-coated gold nib of the fountain pen is a shadow portrait silhouette of Austen. Her birthplace, Hampshire, is echoed in the design details: The fluted resin barrel, featuring Austen’s signature, models the shape of a classical column from a Hampshire-style building while the yellow gold-coated fittings and clip evoke the colour of Hampshire’s flag. 

The details of the cap call to mind memorable characters and scenes from her beloved novel Pride and Prejudice. The pattern on the cap recalls Mr Darcy’s dark blue double-collared coats, a feature of the attire of many Regency gentlemen. The cap ring, bearing a floral design and the inscription “XLIII” references Chapter 43 where Elizabeth first sees Pemberley Woods. The same floral design also surrounds the Montblanc emblem on the cap top, alongside the inscription “By a Lady,” the pseudonym under which Austen signed her first published novel, Sense and Sensibility.

Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen – Limited Edition 1813

Jane Austen spent the last eight years of her life in her house in Chawton, Hampshire, where she wrote, revised, and published all six of her universally beloved novels: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, and Persuasion. Today, the house is open to the public as a small museum dedicated to the author’s life and work. The Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen Limited Edition 1813, available as a fountain pen or rollerball pen, is dedicated to this creative space dear to Austen, and is thus named as it is limited to only 1813 pieces – a nod to the year of publication of Pride and Prejudice.

The beloved novel is referenced again on the cap ring where Austen’s signature and the inscription “XXXIV” is seen – an ode to Chapter 34 of Pride and Prejudice, where Mr Darcy proposes to Elizabeth, a key development in the story. Completing the cap ring’s design is a floral motif that extends to the cap top ring. On the cap top itself sits the Montblanc emblem crafted from mother-of-pearl and surrounded by a floral pattern along with Austen’s sign-off, “By a Lady”.

The barrel crafted from precious hornbeam wood is inspired by Austen’s cherished piano, and harmonises with the patterned yellow gold-coated cap that reflects the historic wall panelling and fireplace in her home. The floral motif seen here extends to the yellow gold-coated cone engraved with a floral pattern, paired perfectly with the solid Au 750 gold bi-color nib on the fountain pen version featuring a shadow portrait silhouette of Austen.

Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen – Limited Edition 97

Jane Austen’s love for travel is obvious in her many letters to her sister, detailing her trips in humorous commentary. To show this passion of Austen’s, the Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen Limited Edition 97 takes inspiration from the period of horse travel during which Austen lived. The wavy pattern on the barrel resembles wafting horse hair, and is further surrounded by a solid Au 750 gold, ruthenium-coated skeleton structure representing a horse’s harness. The look of wafting horse hair is also present in the fine lines on the solid Au 750 gold cone with ruthenium coating. 

The design of the cap is reminiscent of the interior of a travelling coach with its make of yellow English cowhide leather and a solid Au 750 gold, ruthenium-coated inlay. Personalised details on the cap include the initials “JA” drawn from the lettering on Austen’s letterbox, and an embossed shadow portrait silhouette of Jane Austen wearing a travelling hat on the solid Au 750 gold bi-color nib. 

This desire to go out and see the world­ is a trait mirrored in many of Austen’s heroines, from Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice to Marianne Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility. The ruthenium-coated solid Au 750 gold cap ring with Austen’s signature, also bears the inscription “LVI” – a reference to Chapter 56 of Pride and Prejudice, where Lady Catherine de Bourgh visits Elizabeth in her carriage to remind her of her lower status. 

Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen – Limited Edition 8

Jane Austen’s keen observation in Chapter III of Pride and Prejudice – ‘To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love’ is immortalised on the cap ring of the boutique exclusive Writers Edition Homage to Jane Austen Limited Edition 8. This intricate edition is a detailed and joyful ode to the lively balls in Austen’s novels. In Pride and Prejudice, these social events show the evolving relationship between the central characters Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy. Further referencing this significant work is the solid Au 750 signature gold cone set with a turquoise cabochon, and featuring engraved instructions for a contemporary country dance: the turquoise cabochon on the cone marks the position of Mr Darcy, while the ruby embedded in the cap top ring stands for Elizabeth.

The theme of the ball is furthered in the delicate net pattern below the stone setting on both the cap and the barrel, which mimics the delicate lace dresses worn by Regency and Victorian women at the lavish balls. It is also on the solid Au 750 bi-color gold nib that we see  a special embossing depicting Jane Austen wearing her ball jewellery in the style of a shadow portrait silhouette. 

Against the forepart and fittings crafted from solid Au 750 signature gold is the upper barrel ring that features a turquoise-coloured lacquer in reference to Austen’s birthstone and her turquoise ring. Another detail of her life that the edition references includes a decorative needle case Jane Austen gifted to her niece, Louisa Knight, in the early 19th century that inspired the feather motif on the cap and barrel, both crafted from solid Au 750 signature gold set with diamonds and precious stone inlays. The feather motif here is interpreted in a mosaic featuring handmade inlays of yellow sapphires, turquoise, and brilliant cut diamonds.

The cap top boasts a mother-of-pearl Montblanc emblem, surrounded by blue lacquer, solid Au 750 signature gold inlays, and crowned with a ruby. An added personal touch is the cap top ring with the names of the Bennet sisters, and the revelation of her true identity engraved in the blue lacquer – “By Jane Austen”.

Images courtesy of Montblanc, artwork by Curatedition. All rights reserved.

Related links:

Montblanc Writers Edition: An Homage to the Brothers Grimm

Montblanc Meisterstück: A Century of Writing Culture

Montblanc: For the Love of Van Gogh

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