D. Leonardt & Co.

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Leonardt Ltd.
FormerlyD. Leonardt & Co.
Founded1856; 167 years ago (1856) in Birmingham, England[1]
FounderDiedrich Leonardt [1]
Area served

Leonardt Ltd. (formerly D. Leonardt & Co.) is an English manufacturing company that specializes in finishing of metal components,[2] manufacturing products such as corners for stationery such as leathergoods, photograph albums, menu covers, pattern and carpet books, binders and portfolios.

The company also produced writing implements that included dip and fountain nibs, ballpoint pens, pen holders and mechanical pencils,[3] which set Leonardt as one of the oldest manufacturers of dip pens, having produced them since its establishment in 1856.[4]


Former logo, used until 2016

The company was founded in 1856 by Diedrich Leonardt to manufacture dip pens. After two large expansions led by Leonardt in 1863 and 1867, D Leonardt & Co. developed large export market in South America and Eastern Europe, and produced pens for the King of Italy. The manufactured pens were considered to be of high quality and included their famous patent ballpoint pens,[5] such as the "Automatic Wonder Pen", a new type of fountain pen introduced in 1871.[6]

Despite most manufacturers of nibs established in Birmingham having since closed their factories,[1] Leonardt & Co. is one of the few companies that have remained in the industry since its founding, although the company ceased to produce pens. The Leonardt brand is currently produced by the Manuscript Pen Company, based in Highley.[7] The only other British company that currently manufactures dip pens is William Mitchell (Calligraphy) through its brands Joseph Gillott's and William Mitchell.[8]

Pen models[edit]

Some of the dip pen models manufactured by Leonardt were:[9][3]

A vintage D. Leonardt & Co. Eureka pens box
Image Model
6H - Extra fine drawing nib, nickel
30 ("Point"), nickel
33 ("Copying"), nickel
40 ("Pumpking"), fine, blue finish
41 ("Crown"), fine point, with collar body
63.5 ("School"), nickel
70 ("Ornamental") - Oblique with top reservoir, bronze
111 - Nickel and gilding
251 ("Scroll") - for decorative borders, gilding
256 ("Drawing") - gilt, nickel, and bronze
260/265 ("Poster") - Flat-shape pen, brass and gilding
300 ("Ball point"), nickel
400 ("Ornamental"), polished
518 ("Lithographic"), bright
700 - Extra fine drawing nib, nickel
800/801 ("Mapping") - Crowquill type, extrafine, bronze
"Index" - Decorative, bronze
"Principal" - Extrafine, bronze
"Shakespeare" - Decorative, bronze, nickel and gilding
Image Model
516 ("Eureka") - Spherical point
526 - Spherical point
2300 ("Round") - Traditional calligraphy, nickel


  1. ^ a b c More about the Pen Trade in Birmingham (Archive), 1 July 2010
  2. ^ Sub-contract metal finishing on Leonardt Ltd. website, 11 April 2017
  3. ^ a b Product page on Leonardt website (archived), 14 March 2016
  4. ^ "The company" Archived 10 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine on Leonardt website
  5. ^ The manufacturers on The Pen Room website (Archive), 18 February 2012
  6. ^ "Penning an Empire: A Brief History of D. Leonardt & Co". Lungsal. Retrieved 11 January 2016.
  7. ^ Our History Manuscript Pen Company, 24 April 2023
  8. ^ William Mitchell Calligraphy Home, 24 April 2023
  9. ^ D. Leonardt & Co. nibs online catalog on Hans Presto website

External links[edit]