Mirroring the extravagance and riches of the imperial Mongolian court, Montblanc’s Homage to Marco Polo “Il Milione” Limited Edition 1 is a dazzling display of gem-setting virtuosity on one of the most elaborate writing instruments every created by the Maison, a glamorous idea for a luxury gift.
The bejeweled design takes inspiration from the years Marco Polo spent trading precious stones while serving the great Khan, the most powerful person on earth at the time. The rich colors and the shape of the extended cap draw inspiration from the typical Coromandel lacquer folding screens made by the finest artisans in the Orient.
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When removed, the cap set with a full pavé of dark red rubies and cognac tone diamonds, reveals a barrel that features a diamond-set world map inspired by Marco Polo’s travels. The pen’s clip is shaped like the golden pass given to him by Kublai Khan that guaranteed he was given safe passage throughout the Khan’s expansive kingdom. The cap ring displays various creatures from the wild and fantastic world he experienced as told in Il Milione. A reference to one of his most important navigation tools, a compass rose is worked into the cap top under the Montblanc emblem, revealing itself thanks to a special mechanism.
On the other end of this Montblanc pencil, the skeletonized gold cone is set with a majestic 6.12-carat diamond. The 24K solid champagne gold nib design is a representation of Marco Polo crossing the desert, taken from the most important map of the medieval period: the Catalan Atlas.
Marco Polo, the merchant explorer born in 1254 spent 24 years away from his native Venice on an epic journey across Asia. Traveling with his father and uncle, the fearless adventurer trekked along what is now known as the Silk Road to the distant Mongol Empire where he served in the court of the formidable Kublai Khan. Not just an adventurer seeking to discover unknown territories, Marco Polo was a fascinating and skilled storyteller, recording his travels under the title of Il Milione.
The detailed chronicle introduced Europeans to the culture and cartography of Central Asia and China and became a reference for many future travelers including the great Christopher Columbus and Amerigo Vespucci.