Vert Empire – J. Herbin


J. Herbin was established in 1670 and that means J. Herbin is the oldest name in ink production in the world. The company is famous for making ink for Louis XIV, and a black ink for the sole use of Victor Hugo, author of The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Les Miserables. These formulas still reside in company’s headquarters in Paris. I believe it would be cool to bring them back in some special edition pack 🙂 Victo won’t mind I believe.

At the moment company belongs to Exaclair Inc, that has rights to brands like Clairefontaine, Rhodia, Brause or G. Lalo.

J. Herbin offers 30 standard colors:

  1. Ambre de Birmanie
  2. Bleu Azur
  3. Bleu Myosotis
  4. Bleu Nuit
  5. Bleu Pervenche
  6. Bouquet d’Antan
  7. Bouton d’Or
  8. Cacao du Bresil
  9. Cafe des Iles
  10. Diabolo Menthe
  11. Eclat de Saphir
  12. Gris Nuage
  13. Larmes de Cassis
  14. Lie de The
  15. Lierre Sauvage
  16. Orange Indien
  17. Perle Noire
  18. Poussiere de Lune
  19. Rose Cyclamen
  20. Rose Tendresse
  21. Rouge Bourgogne
  22. Rouge Caroubier
  23. Rouge Opera
  24. Rouille d’Ancre
  25. Terre de Feu
  26. Vert Empire
  27. Vert Olive
  28. Vert Pre
  29. Vert Reseda
  30. Violette Pensee

Vert Empire isn’t my favourite color in J. Herbin line. The color varies from green-grey to grey-green depending on the pen and paper you use. It’s decently saturated and very well behaves – I’ve never experienced clogging, hard-starts or feathering with J. Herbin inks and Vert Empire is no exception. For me it lacks character a little bit but I believe it’s the kind of color that can be considered “business appropriate” and it can provide a nice contrast to the boring day to day blue or black.

The flow is remarkable and I would say this ink gets along very well with all pens – I think even precious vintage pen users can use it safely and sleep well without getting up late at night to check if the pen hasn’t desintegrated. It’s easy to flush and clean and it’s important when you tend to use demonstrators. The only real drawback for some users is the lack of water resistance. Well, you can’t always gey what you want.

Drops of ink on kitchen towel

Color ID

Color range

Water resistance

Tomoe River, Kaweco Classic Sport, broad nib

Leuchtturm1917, Kaweco Classic Sport, broad nib

No-name notebook, TWSBI 580, stub 1,1


8 thoughts on “Vert Empire – J. Herbin

  1. Vert Empire is one of my favorite inks, but I prefer it with a fine nib.

    Interestingly, I don’t care as much for Diamine Umber (or De Atramentis Jane Austen, which is similar). Pentermezzo, I guess I like the cooler tint?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Pingback: Cacao du Bresil – J. Herbin | Wondernaut in the world of stationery wonders

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