Ink is a liquid or paste that contains pigments or dyes and is used to color a surface to produce an image, text, or design. Ink is used for drawing or writing with a pen, brush, or quill. Thicker inks, in paste form, are used extensively in letterpress and lithographic printing.
Ink can be a complex medium, composed of solvents, pigments, dyes, resins, lubricants, solubilizers, surfactants, particulate matter, fluorescents, and other materials. The components of inks serve many purposes; the ink's carrier, colorants, and other additives affect the flow and thickness of the ink and its dry appearance.
- INK, n. A villainous compound of tannogallate of iron, gum-arabic and water, chiefly used to facilitate the infection of idiocy and promote intellectual crime. The properties of ink are peculiar and contradictory: it may be used to make reputations and unmake them; to blacken them and to make them white; but it is most generally and acceptably employed as a mortar to bind together the stones of an edifice of fame, and as a whitewash to conceal afterward the rascal quality of the material. There are men called journalists who have established ink baths which some persons pay money to get into, others to get out of. Not infrequently it occurs that a person who has paid to get in pays twice as much to get out.
- Ambrose Bierce, The Cynic's Dictionary (1906); republished as The Devil's Dictionary (1911).
- But words are things, and a small drop of ink,
Falling, like dew, upon a thought produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions think.
- In the ink of our sweat we will find it yet,
The song that is fit for men!
- Frederic L. Knowles, as reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 732.
- The ink of scholars (used in writing) is weighed on the Day of Judgement with the blood of martyrs and the ink of scholars outweighs the blood of martyrs.
- Muhammad as quoted in Al-Jaami' al-Saghîr by Imam al-Suyuti, where it is declared a "weak Hadith".
- Variant translations:
- The ink of the scholar is holier than the blood of the martyr.
- The Islamic Review, Vol. 22 (1934), p. 105, edited by Khwajah Kamal al-Din
- The ink of scholars will be weighed in the scale with the blood of martyrs.
- As quoted in Knowledge of God in Classical Sufism: Foundations of Islamic Mystical Theology (2004) by John Renard.
- The sky is now indelible ink,
The branches reft asunder;
But you and I we do not shrink;
We love the lovely thunder.
- Ogden Nash, A Watched Example Never Boils.
- A match as a pen
Blood on the floor as ink
The forgotten gauze cover as paper
But what should I write?
I might just manage my address.
This ink is strange; it clots.
I write you from a prison
- Alexandros Panagoulis, My Address, written in Military Prisons of Bogiati, 5 June 1971 – After beating.
- O, that her hand,
In whose comparison all whites are ink,
Writing their own reproach, to whose soft seizure
The cygnet's down is harsh and spirit of sense
Hard as the palm of ploughman.