Aurora 88K “Nikargenta”

About This Model

The Aurora 88 model line is one of the more reliable and elegant fountain pens ever made. It heralded the reawakening of the Italian fountain pen industry after WWII, its design inspired by the Parker 51 in so many pockets of American soldiers in Italy for the reconstruction of Europe. However closely they resembled 51s with their gold cap over a black barrel/hood instead of a traditional gripping section and partially hooded nib, under the surface lay an all-Italian piston mechanism and workmanship.  And, as Parker issued 51s in gold and Lustroloy caps, Aurora did as well it the 88, adding the cap called Nikargenta, a silver/nickel alloy. The Nikargenta caps have not held up as well as Parker's Lustroloy; many are pitted today. The original 88, according to research by Jacobini and others, sold from 1948 until it was succeeded by the 88K in 1953 and the 88P in 1958, some 3 million sold pens later. The 88 line was one of very few pens that carried a serial number, which recent research has pinned down to years of manufacture and made it possible to identify each pen's age. 88s were sold until the 1970s, and are generally regarded as the most sold Italian fountain pen. In modern years, after 2005, Aurora began reissuing the 88, in an all-resin-bodied pen, with, after 2015, a wide variety of nibs.

About This Pen

Italy, 1953. The 88k was Aurora’s second model of the venerable 88 line. This pen is a Nikargenta, meaning it has a silver-plated cap, and it looks very elegant and stylish. Its serial number is 1910497 (yes, most 88s had individual serial numbers, which helps to date them), which places this pen in 1953, according to published research on the topic. It came in a Fiat-marked box, so was probably a corporate gift, and has its original certificate of purchase. The nib is a fine, which is responsive and a bit firm. Having three 88s is possibly enough but not too many.

Price: $

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