Why is pencil lead called lead when they don’t have lead in them?

Seeing that pencil “leads” are made from graphite, the name doesn’t make much sense, does it?

But there once was a time when people thought graphite was a type of lead, hence the name.

Lead is extremely toxic to humans and pencils should not contain any lead, even in the wood or paint.

This is especially true if kids or young children will be using them as they tend to bite everything they see.