Inventor Edward Nairne
Edward Nairne
Sandwich Kent
Died1 September 1806 | Age 80

Edward Nairne 1770

Nairne produced the first rubber writing eraser, for an inventions competition.

The invention was described by Joseph Priestley on April 15, 1770: "I have seen a substance excellently adapted to the purpose of wiping from paper the mark of black-lead-pencil. ... It is sold by Mr. Nairne, Mathematical Instrument-Maker, opposite the Royal-Exchange."

Needed invention

Before the rubber eraser the common ink remover was old bread crumbs. This was a messy process, even if you had the crumbs to hand.

Hymen Lipman 1858

It took another few years for Hymen Lipman (March 20, 1817 – November 4, 1893), born to English parents, to have the idea of putting the eraser on the other end of a pencil. He patented his invention on March 30, 1858.

Tags: pencil eraser graphite writing letter
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