The Conway Stewart

At the time when Heaney turned 11, it was not uncommon for parents to offer children a gift to celebrate some important success, here passing entrance examinations and entering Secondary education as a boarder. So authentic are the markings he describes that Heaney might well be looking at the very pen of 60 years earlier: the nib’s Medium point; its 14 carat gold composition; the Conway Stewart branding of the screw-top and mottled barrel; the bubble at the nib’s tip for smooth script. The pen-gun of ‘Digging’ is recalled: the Conway Stewart has a barrel and pump-action (akin that of a shotgun); it requires to be manually loaded, not with cartridges, but treated to its first deep snorkel/ In a newly opened ink bottle . The process is not a clean one: ink […]