Ink pot and quill, X-ray

Ink pot and quill, X-ray

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Credit: GUSTOIMAGES/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ink pot and quill, coloured X-ray. Bird flight feathers such as this one are the sort used to make a quill. The shaft (rachis) is hollow and sharp at the tip, with this hollow section called the calamus. When dipped in a liquid such as ink, a reservoir of ink is drawn up into the hollow shaft. This can then be used for writing, with the quill dipped back into the ink pot to replenish it.

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