from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A pen having as its writing point a small ball bearing that transfers ink stored in a cartridge onto a writing surface.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An attachment to a compass or pair of dividers, fitted to one leg to form a seat over a hole when a circle is to be described about the hole.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun a pen which has a small metal ball as point of transfer of ink to paper, at the tip of a cylandrical and non-refillable reservoir of ink; -- short for ballpoint pen.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun colloquial A ballpoint pen, biro.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a pen that has a small metal ball as the point of transfer of ink to paper


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

ball + point


  • The note was always written in ballpoint pen on a small slip of white paper, affixed with cellophane tape.

    Notes From The Underground

  • It could be a piece on building your collection, buying your books from pavements, Wheeler stalls, traffic signals or ordering them on the net; fanatic non-lenders who don't lend their books no matter what; lenders who are always passing on their books; rage at book vandals who scribble in ballpoint pen in the margins and underline lines they are particularly moved by; diarists; fetishes like only buying hard back; memories associated with inscriptions on the first page; the heady smell of old paper pockmarked with pinholes; serendipitious discoveries; the quirks of your local lending library, lifelong quests to source and own a whole series, say Granta or the Time Life series; first-edition fanatics; inheriting grandpa's collections and so on.

    Archive 2006-06-01

  • Handwritten with a ballpoint were the words: "Vacation.


  • though god knows why something called a "ballpoint" pen is less alarming.

    Zombie Jokes!

  • Postmaster General Arthur Summerfield said at the time he would try anything, "Yes, even ballpoint pens."

    Poor Penmanship Spells Job Security for Post Office's Scribble Specialists

  • I got the idea for this series of pieces from a link my friend showed me of an intricate ballpoint drawing on the outside of a styrofoam cup.

    Kater’s Art » 2009 » December

  • He was there with a skinny Justin-Bieber-haired friend, whose small piece of cardboard read, "We are the 99%" written with a scratchy ballpoint pen.

    Tessa Blake: Why We Shouldn't Compare Occupy Wall Street to the Tea Party

  • She had written the letters in a circle on a scrap of paper and was puzzling out what word they might add up to when, with a ballpoint pen in her hand, her heart stopped.

    My mother's notebook of Christmas past

  • These protective garments are generally also festooned with wands of office: besmeared stethoscopes draped around the neck, clunky paging devices clipped to the belt, and an array of well chewed ballpoint pens poking forlornly from the breast and hip pockets.

    Cri de coeur

  • This reminds me of the infamous story of NASA putting great sums of money into developing a highly sophisticated ballpoint that could be used in gravity free space while the Russians just simply used a pencil.

    IBM's New Solar Desalination Tech Could Create Rivers in the Desert | Inhabitat


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