Monday, January 28, 2008
Chinese Caligraphy set: carbon ink stick, ink stone, water jar, brushes
Indian ink (or India ink in American English), also called Chinese ink, is a simple black ink once widely used for writing and printing, and now more commonly used for drawing, especially when inking comics and comic strips, as well as in diamond cutting. Indian ink usually is not suitable for fountain pens, as it will readily clog the pen.
Early treatises on the arts refer to black carbon ink that was prepared by the ancient Chinese and Egyptians. Originally designed for blacking the surfaces of raised stone-carved hieroglyphs, the basis of the ink was a black carbon pigment in an aqueous adhesive or binding medium; for example, a mixture of soot from pine smoke and lamp oil mixed with the gelatin of donkey skin and musk. The ink invented according to legend by the Chinese philosopher, Tien-Lcheu (2697 BCE), became common by the year 1200 BCE.