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Thread: Question about Pelikan pens

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    Senior Member Scrawler's Avatar
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    Question Question about Pelikan pens

    What does "Souveran" mean ans what distinguishes it from any other Pelikan pen?

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    Senior Member Jeph's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Souverän is just a marketing name from the re-introduction in the 1980's.
    It translates, as you would expect, as sovereign.

    As far as I can tell, all M400's and larger of the same design are called that.

    Edit: 1982 Pelikan History: Souverän
    Last edited by Jeph; June 6th, 2015 at 03:12 PM.

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    Senior Member Laura N's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Here's a really good resource, listing all of them. This entire Ruettinger site is worth reading, in my view.

    As far as I can tell, the Souverän line contains the higher end pens with nicer trim and gold nibs.

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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Souveran is also german for Sovereign, it's in the same vein as Meisterstuck being german for masterpiece
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    Senior Member Scrawler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Thank you for this information. I have one Pelikan, a 400NN which was a gift because it was made in the year of my birth, so it would not be a "Souveran". I used to have a friend who was a colonel in the army of the USSR, who said to me "if you do not have a Pelikan, you do not have a fountain pen". As a consequence I always held that brand in the highest respect, even though I did not have one.

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    Senior Member Laura N's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawler View Post
    Thank you for this information. I have one Pelikan, a 400NN which was a gift because it was made in the year of my birth, so it would not be a "Souveran".
    Well, it's not a Souverän, but it's every bit as good. Many would say, better.

    Since the M400 was based on the original 400 line, yours is sort of the father or uncle of the Souverän series.

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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    What surprised me about the 400NN when I first filled it was that the barrel is partially transparent, so I could see how much ink was in it. I had not realized the striping was similar in function to the rings on a Parker Vacumatic. What does NN mean and how does that distinguish it from other 400s of the early 1950s?

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    Senior Member tandaina's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    Big difference is the shape of the piston knob. Take a look at thepenguinpen.com as Rick has picks of all the 50s variants. There were three different filing knob shapes and some slight cap variations. NN is the pointy knob if I re!ember the lineup in my cabinet upstairs. All equally good pens, the diff is all cosmetic as I understand it.
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    Senior Member Laura N's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about Pelikan pens

    If you go to this part of the Ruettinger website, you'll see a photograph of the 400, 400N and 400NN. There also are dates of production, dimensions and further information. The 400 started the line in 1951. The 400N was produced, with a slightly longer length and more rounded ends, between 1955 and 1957. The 400NN succeeded the 400N and was produced between 1957 and 1965. Essentially each new N made the 400 model slightly longer and more cigar shaped.

    Pelikan had earlier used the same "N" designation with the 100 models, starting with the 100 and then adding the 100N. Also 101 and 101N.

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