Ten things you may not know about pencils

 personalised pencilsMy company, RT Promotions, sells thousands of imprinted and personalised pencils to business’s every year. Despite being old fashioned and unglamorous, they are still a powerfully effective promotional gift to give, especially in these days of being environmentally friendly. Some of our best selling lines are made from recycled plastic vending-machine cups, so no risk to the trees with them then!!! But thinking about the pencil made me think about some other facts, some of which are not so obvious, and then it was but a small step to come up with this article, “Ten things you may not know about pencils“……….. 


  1. The world’s largest pencil is 65 feet high and is made from Malaysian wood and polymer. It’s the centrepiece display at it’s manufacturers offices in Kuala Lumpur.
  2. Most pencils sold in Europe are without an eraser tip, whereas in America, the majority have one. Are Europeans more confident writers?
  3. Up until the French discovered that caoutchouc, a vegetable gum now known as rubber, could be used to erase pencil marks, writers used to use bread crumbs to remove their mistakes.
  4. The average pencil holds enough graphite to draw a line 35 miles long, or to write roughly 45,000 words.
  5. The word ‘pencil’ derives from the Latin penicillus, meaning ‘little tail’.
  6. There is no risk of lead poisoning if you accidentally stab yourself with a pencil because it contains no lead – just a mixture of clay and graphite.
  7. Nasa spent millions researching for a pen capable of writing in the vacuum of space. The Russians solved the same problem by using a pencil. Note: This story is FALSE, and has found infamy via the internet.
  8. A pencil will write under water (not sure about the paper though)!!
  9. A pencil lead, or a line drawn by a pencil, will conduct electricity.
  10. More than half of all the worlds pencils originate from China. In 2004 their factories were producing more than 10 billion pencils per annum, enough to circle the earth more than 40 times.

Did you know all of them?
Got any new ones to share with me?

4 Responses to “Ten things you may not know about pencils”

  1. Howard Woodward Says:


    I love this! Can’t beat a whole load of seemingly useless information. The more useless it is, the more interesting it is.



  2. What? No mention of the fabulous Cumberland Pencil Museum in Keswick??? http://www.pencilmuseum.co.uk/

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