Maruman Mnemosyne Notebook

Hands down the best paper I’ve ever used! To me, Maruman Mnemosyne paper is the gold standard of fountain pen friendly paper. It is the paper that I use for almost all my schoolwork, whether it be note-taking, homework, writing assignments, etc.


The Maruman Mnemosyne I use is sized at B5, measured at 7.4 by 9.9 inches with 7mm line rulings. The binding is a double ring, ensuring a smooth flip as well as being able to take a beating (the stories I could tell you…). At the top there are sections for Date/No. and a Title. The lines are all a cool grey making the rulings very subtle and less distracting during use. There are 80 pages that are micro-perforated, allowing for easy tearing. All the pages are acid-free, meaning they won’t yellow over time, making it great for storing notes and the like. Each page is split up into 3 different sections of 10 lines each. I found it very helpful as I used those 10 lines as guidelines to keep what I wrote to a minimum that encapsulated the main points of the section.

Why do I love this paper so much? It is the smoothest out of all the papers I’ve ever tried. Nothing I have used short of Tomoe River has been nearly as smooth. With a slightly larger nib, I feel the pen gliding over the paper. My favorite pen to use is my Pilot VP with a medium nib. After it was binderized, it felt smooth no matter what paper I used it on, even copy paper. I feel that the Maruman brings out the best in it, though.


Another great reason I love Maruman is the absorbency. On Rhodia paper, it takes a little longer for inks to dry allowing for many potential mishaps and accidental swipes occur. Not with the Maruman! While it doesn’t dry instantly (if only), the dry times on the Maruman is noticeably less than on Rhodia.While absorbent, it also is very resistant to ghosting, which made it possible for me to use the other side of the page without any hassle. The absorbency was displayed to me on accident one day when I was fiddling around with my converter. I think I was frustratedly trying to push the ink to the front as the nib was drying up. I twisted a touch to hard and the ink dropped onto the page creating a large blob. Panicking, I desperately tried to spread it out across the page to prevent it from soaking through (yes, it can possibly happen). I spread it out and waited for about a thirty seconds before daring to turn the page. To my great surprise, the ink blob had mostly dried, other than the very center. The other side was also completely usable despite what had happened.


So I’ve been praising this paper a lot so far, but now I will address one of its less attractive aspects, the price. The price for the Maruman notebook I use is $11.25USD on JetPens. Rhodia, on the other hand, doesn’t offer any of it’s notebooks in the B5 size. So for the sake of comparing prices, I will use two notebooks of the same size: A4. The price for the Maruman Mnemosyne A4 notebook is $15.50USD. The price for a Rhodia Pad No. 18 is $13.75USD. For the same size, you would be paying $1.75USD more. So it all comes down to: Is the premium worth it? I wholeheartedly say yes, it is. The quality and experience provided by the Maruman is significantly better than the Rhodia in my humble opinion. When I’m writing on the Maruman, I feel how absorbent and smooth it is, I see how the ink pops on the page and I feel the quality oozing from the design. What can I say? You get what you pay for in this case. Keep in mind this is simply my opinion. It is up to you to try the Maruman Mnemosyne out and then make your decision on your willingness to pay. It is subjective for everyone, but I have a hunch that many people will feel the same as I do.

As I mentioned in the beginning, this is hands down the best paper I’ve ever used. I honestly can’t believe how long it took me to get around to this review despite using and loving this paper for so long (approximately 2 years now). If I had a choice of using only one kind paper for the rest of my life, this would be it. If you can get over the slight premium over standard Rhodia paper, you’ll find out why me and many others love this offering from Maruman so much. What are you waiting for?

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with JetPens. I used the prices on their site as it was simply where I have gotten my notebooks from since the beginning. At the time, Goulet Pens was not offering Maruman products, something that changed rather recently. So while the prices may differ from store to store, I’m pretty sure the price disparity between Maruman and Rhodia will stay the same.


5 thoughts on “Maruman Mnemosyne Notebook

  1. I use these in B5 size daily and I much prefer them to any others. Mnemosyne quality is exceptional and worth every penny. I should buy a case of them to be sure I always have plenty!

  2. I just bought one of these notebooks – the 196 – up in Akita City yesterday. I’ve been using a Rhodia, but they are expensive here in Japan. Several pen blogs mentioned this notebook so I grabbed one and was pleasantly surprised. I much prefer it to the Rhodia. The paper isn’t as slick, and there is no bleed through from page to page.

    By the by, I paid ¥350 for it – a little less than $3.50 now that the Brexit improved the ¥/$ ration, so I plan to buy another one next time I’m in a local stationary store.

      • Thanks for the quick reply. The cost was what first drew me…a Rhodia notebook costs $60 in Japan!!! The one I just bought was $3.50…big difference. I was just surfing reviews when I saw yours and decided to comment. Cheers, Steve

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