It is possible that soon humanity unlearn to write what is called - by hand, lose centuries of skill to drive a pen on paper, in fact much more convenient and faster squeal text on a computer keyboard. The rapid development of communication technology to confirm this, somewhere sad thought. Calligraphy lessons sink into oblivion as Latin, weaving bast and rustic spindle. What can you do? Life goes on.
But it is impossible to imagine that humanity has ceased to draw. Write - is to communicate with others, to draw - it's only with yourself. The child begins to draw much earlier than writing. "Kal-Malle" on paper wallpaper father's house - the first sweet creativity, has the same root with the cave paintings of prehistoric man. As always drawing, so it turns out, eternal drawing tool.
History of the pencil begins with the XIV century. Artists painted then mostly sticks made from a mixture of lead and zinc, sometimes called "silver pencil." These tools used by such masters graphics as Dürer, Van Eyck and Botticelli.
Charcoal is still used, as in ancient times, but not in the form of a campfire embers, and, for example, specifically in treating furnace willow sticks in a pot sealed with clay.
Prototypes modern graphite pencil appeared in the XVI century. English shepherds from the Cumberland area opened in the dark mass of the earth, which was used to mark sheep. Initially, because of the color, similar to the color of lead, the deposit taken for deposits of this mineral used for casting bullets. But by defining new material unsuitable for this purpose, began to make out of it at the end of a thin, pointed sticks and used them to paint. They were soft, and get your hands dirty for drawing, but not for writing. In the XVII century graphite commonly sold on the streets. Buyers, mostly artists, these graphite rods clamped between pieces of wood or branches, wraps them in paper or fasten with string.
From prototypes most likely related to the appearance of the word "pencil". It goes back to the Turkic karadas «black stone" and the Turkish karatas - "black shale". Linguists associated with it also the word Karandyshev - baby, toddler, little man, pointing to the proximity of its value to the German word «stift» - pencil toddler.
The so-called "Paris pencil" ("sauce") is made from a mixture of white clay and black soot. He turned out good in giving a black mark on the paper, and it is less scratch. They still draw graphic artists. In France, in the XV century, was invented by adding pastel chalk pigments and fats. Used with the gum arabic or juice of the fig tree, for example. Leonardo da Vinci is credited with the discovery of sanguine - "red chalk". It is a natural kaolin, colored by iron oxides.
The first document, which referred to a wooden pencil, dated 1683 year. In Germany, the production of graphite pencils began in Nuremberg. The Germans guessed mix graphite powder with sulfur and glue, thus obtaining a rod is not of the highest quality, but at a lower price. To hide it, pencils manufacturers have resorted to various tricks. In the wooden hull of a pencil at the beginning and at the end of the inserted pieces of pure graphite, was in the middle of the same low-quality artificial rod. Sometimes the inside of the pencil and did was empty. It is clear that the so-called "Nuremberg merchandise" did not enjoy a good reputation.
At the end of the XVIII century Czech industrialist J. Hartmut, which produced laboratory glassware, combined clay and graphite pencil initiating the production of the famous «KOH-I-NOOR».
In France, around the same time H.-J. Conte pencil invented independently in 1794. At the end of the XVIII century English Parliament introduced a strict ban on the export of precious graphite from Cumberland. Violation of this decision was punished very severely, including the death penalty. But despite this, graphite continued fall in continental Europe through smuggling, which led to a sharp increase in its price. On the instructions of the French convent Konte developed formulation mixing graphite with clay and production of these materials are of high quality rods. Using high temperature processing was achieved high durability. More important was the fact that a change in the proportions of the mixture afforded the opportunity to make rods of different hardness. This is the basis of modern classification pencil hardness (T, M, TM or in the English version: H - solid, B - soft, NV - medium hardness). Figures before the letters stand for a further degree of softness or hardness. The latter depends on the percentage of graphite in the mixture and affect the color of the rod (pencil lead) - the more graphite, the darker and softer lead pencil.