A BOOK is a series of pages assembled for easy portability and reading, as well as the composition contained in it. The most common modern form of book is a codex volume consisting of rectangular paper pages bound on one side, with a heavier cover and spine, so that it can fan open for reading. Books have taken other forms, such as scrolls , leaves on a string, or strips tied together; and the pages have been of parchment , vellum , papyrus , bamboo slips , palm leaves , silk , wood , and other materials.
The contents of books are also called books, as are other
compositions of that length. For instance,
In library and information science , a monograph is a book of one or more volumes which is not a serial such as a magazine , journal , or newspaper .
An avid reader or collector of books or a book lover is a bibliophile or colloquially, "bookworm".
* 1 Etymology
* 2 History
* 2.1 Antiquity
* 2.2 19th century to 21st centuries
* 3 Modern manufacturing
* 3.1 Processes
* 3.1.1 Layout * 3.1.2 Printing * 3.1.3 Binding
* 3.2 Finishing
* 4 Digital printing
* 4.1 E-book
* 5 Design * 6 Sizes
* 7 Types
* 7.1 By content
* 7.2 Decodable readers and leveled books * 7.3 By physical format
* 8 Libraries
* 9 Identification and classification
* 9.1 Classification systems
* 10 Uses
* 11.1 Other forms of secondary spread * 11.2 Evolution of the book industry
* 12 Paper and conservation * 13 See also * 14 References * 15 Sources * 16 Further reading * 17 External links
The word book comes from Old English "bōc", which in turn comes from the Germanic root "*bōk-", cognate to "beech ". Similarly, in Slavic languages (for example, Russian , Bulgarian , Macedonian ) "буква" (bukva—"letter") is cognate with "beech". In Russian and in Serbian and Macedonian, the word "букварь" (bukvar') or "буквар" (bukvar) refers specifically to a primary school textbook that helps young children master the techniques of reading and writing. It is thus conjectured that the earliest Indo-European writings may have been carved on beech wood. Similarly, the Latin word codex, meaning a book in the modern sense (bound and with separate leaves), originally meant "block of wood".
Main article: History of books
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Sumerian clay tablet , currently housed in the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago , inscribed with the text of the poem Inanna and Ebih by the priestess Enheduanna , the first author whose name is known
When writing systems were created in ancient civilizations , a variety of objects, such as stone, clay , tree bark, metal sheets, and bones, were used for writing; these are studied in epigraphy .
A tablet is a physically robust writing medium, suitable for casual transport and writing. Clay tablets were flattened and mostly dry pieces of clay that could be easily carried, and impressed with a stylus . They were used as a writing medium, especially for writing in cuneiform , throughout the Bronze Age and well into the Iron Age . Wax tablets were pieces of wood covered in a thick enough coating of wax to record the impressions of a stylus. They were the normal writing material in schools, in accounting, and for taking notes. They had the advantage of being reusable: the wax could be melted, and reformed into a blank.
The custom of binding several wax tablets together (Roman pugillares) is a possible precursor of modern bound (codex) books. The etymology of the word codex (block of wood) also suggests that it may have developed from wooden wax tablets.
Scrolls can be made from papyrus , a thick paper-like material made
by weaving the stems of the papyrus plant, then pounding the woven
sheet with a hammer-like tool until it is flattened.
Herodotus (History 5:58), the
writing and papyrus to Greece around the 10th or 9th century BC. The
Greek word for papyrus as writing material (biblion) and book (biblos)
come from the Phoenician port town
Whether made from papyrus, parchment , or paper, scrolls were the dominant form of book in the Hellenistic, Roman, Chinese, Hebrew, and Macedonian cultures. The more modern codex book format form took over the Roman world by late antiquity , but the scroll format persisted much longer in Asia.
Isidore of Seville
A codex (in modern usage) is the first information repository that modern people would recognize as a "book": leaves of uniform size bound in some manner along one edge, and typically held between two covers made of some more robust material. The first written mention of the codex as a form of book is from Martial , in his Apophoreta CLXXXIV at the end of the first century, where he praises its compactness. However, the codex never gained much popularity in the pagan Hellenistic world, and only within the Christian community did it gain widespread use. This change happened gradually during the 3rd and 4th centuries, and the reasons for adopting the codex form of the book are several: the format is more economical, as both sides of the writing material can be used; and it is portable, searchable, and easy to conceal. A book is much easier to read, to find a page that you want, and to flip through. A scroll is more awkward to use. The Christian authors may also have wanted to distinguish their writings from the pagan and Judaic texts written on scrolls. In addition, some metal books were made, that required smaller pages of metal, instead of an impossibly long, unbending scroll of metal. A book can also be easily stored in more compact places, or side by side in a tight library or shelf space.
The fall of the
Monasteries carried on the Latin writing tradition in the Western
Before the invention and adoption of the printing press , almost all
books were copied by hand, which made books expensive and
comparatively rare. Smaller monasteries usually had only a few dozen
books, medium-sized perhaps a few hundred. By the 9th century, larger
collections held around 500 volumes and even at the end of the Middle
Ages, the papal library in
The scriptorium of the monastery was usually located over the chapter house . Artificial light was forbidden for fear it may damage the manuscripts. There were five types of scribes:
* Calligraphers, who dealt in fine book production * Copyists, who dealt with basic production and correspondence * Correctors, who collated and compared a finished book with the manuscript from which it had been produced * Illuminators, who painted illustrations * Rubricators, who painted in the red letters
The bookmaking process was long and laborious. The parchment had to
be prepared, then the unbound pages were planned and ruled with a
blunt tool or lead, after which the text was written by the scribe ,
who usually left blank areas for illustration and rubrication .
Finally, the book was bound by the bookbinder .
chained books in the
Malatestiana Library of
Different types of ink were known in antiquity, usually prepared from
soot and gum, and later also from gall nuts and iron vitriol . This
gave writing a brownish black color, but black or brown were not the
only colors used. There are texts written in red or even gold, and
different colors were used for illumination. For very luxurious
manuscripts the whole parchment was colored purple , and the text was
written on it with gold or silver (for example,
Irish monks introduced spacing between words in the 7th century. This facilitated reading, as these monks tended to be less familiar with Latin. However, the use of spaces between words did not become commonplace before the 12th century. It has been argued that the use of spacing between words shows the transition from semi-vocalized reading into silent reading.
The first books used parchment or vellum (calfskin ) for the pages. The book covers were made of wood and covered with leather. Because dried parchment tends to assume the form it had before processing, the books were fitted with clasps or straps. During the later Middle Ages , when public libraries appeared, up to the 18th century, books were often chained to a bookshelf or a desk to prevent theft. These chained books are called libri catenati.
At first, books were copied mostly in monasteries, one at a time. With the rise of universities in the 13th century, the Manuscript culture of the time led to an increase in the demand for books, and a new system for copying books appeared. The books were divided into unbound leaves (pecia), which were lent out to different copyists, so the speed of book production was considerably increased. The system was maintained by secular stationers guilds, which produced both religious and non-religious material.
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People of various religious (Jews, Christians, Zoroastrians, Muslims)
and ethnic backgrounds (Syriac, Coptic, Persian, Arab etc.) in the
Middle East also produced and bound books in the Islamic Golden Age
(mid 8th century to 1258), developing advanced techniques in Islamic
calligraphy , miniatures and bookbinding. A number of cities in the
medieval Islamic world had book production centers and book markets.
Yaqubi (d. 897) says that in his time Baghdad had over a hundred
The medieval Muslim world also used a method of reproducing reliable copies of a book in large quantities known as check reading , in contrast to the traditional method of a single scribe producing only a single copy of a single manuscript. In the check reading method, only "authors could authorize copies, and this was done in public sessions in which the copyist read the copy aloud in the presence of the author, who then certified it as accurate." With this check-reading system, "an author might produce a dozen or more copies from a single reading," and with two or more readings, "more than one hundred copies of a single book could easily be produced." By using as writing material the relatively cheap paper instead of parchment or papyrus the Muslims, in the words of Pedersen "accomplished a feat of crucial significance not only to the history of the Islamic book, but also to the whole world of books".
In woodblock printing , a relief image of an entire page was carved into blocks of wood, inked, and used to print copies of that page. This method originated in China, in the Han dynasty (before 220 AD), as a method of printing on textiles and later paper , and was widely used throughout East Asia . The oldest dated book printed by this method is The Diamond Sutra (868 AD).The method (called Woodcut when used in art) arrived in Europe in the early 14th century. Books (known as block-books ), as well as playing-cards and religious pictures , began to be produced by this method. Creating an entire book was a painstaking process, requiring a hand-carved block for each page; and the wood blocks tended to crack, if stored for long. The monks or people who wrote them were paid highly.
Movable Type And Incunabula
A 15th-century Incunable . Notice the blind-tooled cover, corner bosses and clasps. Main articles: Movable type and Incunable Selected Teachings of Buddhist Sages and Son Masters, the earliest known book printed with movable metal type, 1377. Bibliothèque nationale de France .
The Chinese inventor
Bi Sheng made movable type of earthenware circa
1045, but there are no known surviving examples of his printing.
Around 1450, in what is commonly regarded as an independent invention,
Early printed books, single sheets and images which were created before 1501 in Europe are known as incunables or incunabula. "A man born in 1453, the year of the fall of Constantinople, could look back from his fiftieth year on a lifetime in which about eight million books had been printed, more perhaps than all the scribes of Europe had produced since Constantine founded his city in A.D. 330."
19TH CENTURY TO 21ST CENTURIES
Steam-powered printing presses became popular in the early 19th
century. These machines could print 1,100 sheets per hour, but workers
could only set 2,000 letters per hour.
Throughout the 20th century, libraries have faced an ever-increasing rate of publishing, sometimes called an information explosion . The advent of electronic publishing and the internet means that much new information is not printed in paper books, but is made available online through a digital library , on CD-ROM , in the form of e-books or other online media. An on-line book is an e-book that is available online through the internet. Though many books are produced digitally, most digital versions are not available to the public, and there is no decline in the rate of paper publishing. There is an effort, however, to convert books that are in the public domain into a digital medium for unlimited redistribution and infinite availability. This effort is spearheaded by Project Gutenberg combined with Distributed Proofreaders . There have also been new developments in the process of publishing books. Technologies such as POD or "print on demand ", which make it possible to print as few as one book at a time, have made self-publishing (and vanity publishing ) much easier and more affordable. On-demand publishing has allowed publishers, by avoiding the high costs of warehousing, to keep low-selling books in print rather than declaring them out of print.
Main article: Bookbinding See also: Publishing The spine of the book is an important aspect in book design , especially in the cover design. When the books are stacked up or stored in a shelf, the details on the spine is the only visible surface that contains the information about the book. In stores, it is the details on the spine that attract buyers' attention first.
The methods used for the printing and binding of books continued fundamentally unchanged from the 15th century into the early 20th century. While there was more mechanization , a book printer in 1900 had much in common with Gutenberg . Gutenberg\'s invention was the use of movable metal types, assembled into words, lines, and pages and then printed by letterpress to create multiple copies. Modern paper books are printed on papers designed specifically for printed books. Traditionally, book papers are off-white or low-white papers (easier to read), are opaque to minimise the show-through of text from one side of the page to the other and are (usually) made to tighter caliper or thickness specifications, particularly for case-bound books. Different paper qualities are used depending on the type of book: Machine finished coated papers , woodfree uncoated papers , coated fine papers and special fine papers are common paper grades.
Today, the majority of books are printed by offset lithography . When a book is printed, the pages are laid out on the plate so that after the printed sheet is folded the pages will be in the correct sequence. Books tend to be manufactured nowadays in a few standard sizes. The sizes of books are usually specified as "trim size": the size of the page after the sheet has been folded and trimmed. The standard sizes result from sheet sizes (therefore machine sizes) which became popular 200 or 300 years ago, and have come to dominate the industry. British conventions in this regard prevail throughout the English-speaking world, except for the USA. The European book manufacturing industry works to a completely different set of standards.
Modern bound books are organized according to a particular format
called the book's layout. Although there is great variation in layout,
modern books tend to adhere to as set of rules with regard to what the
parts of the layout are and what their content usually includes. A
basic layout will include a front cover, a back cover, and the book's
content which is called its body copy or content pages. The front
cover often bears the book's title (and subtitle, if any) and the name
of its author or editor(s). The inside front cover page is usually
left blank in both hardcover and paperback books. The next section, if
present, is the book's front matter, which includes all textual
material after the front cover but not part of the book's content—
such things as a forward, a dedication, and a table of contents as
well as publisher data such as the book's edition or printing number
and place of publication. Between the body copy and the back cover
goes the end matter which would include any indices, sets of tables,
or diagrams, glossaries, or lists of cited works (though an edited
book with multiple contributing authors usually places cited works at
the end of each authored chapter). The inside back cover page, like
that inside the front cover, is usually blank. The back cover itself
is the usual place for the book's
Some books, particularly those with shorter runs (i.e. fewer copies) will be printed on sheet-fed offset presses, but most books are now printed on web presses, which are fed by a continuous roll of paper, and can consequently print more copies in a shorter time. As the production line circulates, a complete "book" is collected together in one stack, next to another, and another A web press carries out the folding itself, delivering bundles of signatures (sections) ready to go into the gathering line. Note that the pages of a book are printed two at a time, not as one complete book. Excess numbers are printed to make up for any spoilage due to make-readies or test pages to assure final print quality.
A make-ready is the preparatory work carried out by the pressmen to get the printing press up to the required quality of impression . Included in make-ready is the time taken to mount the plate onto the machine, clean up any mess from the previous job, and get the press up to speed. As soon as the pressman decides that the printing is correct, all the make-ready sheets will be discarded, and the press will start making books. Similar make readies take place in the folding and binding areas, each involving spoilage of paper.
After the signatures are folded and gathered, they move into the bindery . In the middle of last century there were still many trade binders – stand-alone binding companies which did no printing, specializing in binding alone. At that time, because of the dominance of letterpress printing, typesetting and printing took place in one location, and binding in a different factory. When type was all metal, a typical book's worth of type would be bulky, fragile and heavy. The less it was moved in this condition the better: so printing would be carried out in the same location as the typesetting. Printed sheets on the other hand could easily be moved. Now, because of increasing computerization of preparing a book for the printer, the typesetting part of the job has flowed upstream, where it is done either by separately contracting companies working for the publisher, by the publishers themselves, or even by the authors. Mergers in the book manufacturing industry mean that it is now unusual to find a bindery which is not also involved in book printing (and vice versa).
If the book is a hardback its path through the bindery will involve more points of activity than if it is a paperback . Unsewn binding, is now increasingly common. The signatures of a book can also be held together by "Smyth sewing" using needles, "McCain sewing", using drilled holes often used in schoolbook binding, or "notch binding", where gashes about an inch long are made at intervals through the fold in the spine of each signature. The rest of the binding process is similar in all instances. Sewn and notch bound books can be bound as either hardbacks or paperbacks.
"Making cases" happens off-line and prior to the book's arrival at the binding line. In the most basic case-making, two pieces of cardboard are placed onto a glued piece of cloth with a space between them into which is glued a thinner board cut to the width of the spine of the book. The overlapping edges of the cloth (about 5/8" all round) are folded over the boards, and pressed down to adhere. After case-making the stack of cases will go to the foil stamping area for adding decorations and type.
Recent developments in book manufacturing include the development of
Main article: e-book A screen of a Kindle e-reader.
In the 2000s, due to the rise in availability of affordable handheld computing devices, the opportunity to share texts through electronic means became a more appealing option for media publishers. Thus, the "e-book" was made. The term e-book is a contraction of "electronic book"; it refers to a book-length publication in digital form. An e-book is usually made available through the internet, but also on CD-ROM and other forms. E-Books may be read either via a computer or by means of a portable book display device known as an e-book reader, such as the Sony Reader , Barnes "> Real-size facsimile of Codex Gigas The world\'s largest book
The size of a modern book is based on the printing area of a common flatbed press. The pages of type were arranged and clamped in a frame, so that when printed on a sheet of paper the full size of the press, the pages would be right side up and in order when the sheet was folded, and the folded edges trimmed.
The most common book sizes are:
* Quarto (4to): the sheet of paper is folded twice, forming four leaves (eight pages) approximately 11-13 inches (ca 30 cm) tall * Octavo (8vo): the most common size for current hardcover books. The sheet is folded three times into eight leaves (16 pages) up to 9 ¾" (ca 23 cm) tall. * DuoDecimo (12mo): a size between 8vo and 16mo, up to 7 ¾" (ca 18 cm) tall * Sextodecimo (16mo): the sheet is folded four times, forming 16 leaves (32 pages) up to 6 ¾" (ca 15 cm) tall
Sizes smaller than 16mo are:
* 24mo: up to 5 ¾" (ca 13 cm) tall. * 32mo: up to 5" (ca 12 cm) tall. * 48mo: up to 4" (ca 10 cm) tall. * 64mo: up to 3" (ca 8 cm) tall.
Small books can be called BOOKLETS.
Sizes larger than quarto are:
* Folio: up to 15" (ca 38 cm) tall.
* Elephant Folio: up to 23" (ca 58 cm) tall.
Novels in a bookstore
A common separation by content are fiction and non-fiction books. This simple separation can be found in most collections , libraries , and bookstores .
Many of the books published today are fiction, meaning that they are in-part or completely untrue. Historically, paper production was considered too expensive to be used for entertainment . An increase in global literacy and print technology led to the increased publication of books for the purpose of entertainment, and allegorical social commentary . Most fiction is additionally categorized by genre .
The NOVEL is the most common form of fiction book. Novels are stories that typically feature a plot , setting , themes and characters . Stories and narrative are not restricted to any topic; a novel can be whimsical, serious or controversial . The novel has had a tremendous impact on entertainment and publishing markets . A novella is a term sometimes used for fiction prose typically between 17,500 and 40,000 words, and a novelette between 7,500 and 17,500. A short story may be any length up to 10,000 words, but these word lengths vary.
COMIC BOOKS or GRAPHIC NOVELS are books in which the story is illustrated. The characters and narrators use speech or thought bubbles to express verbal language.
A page from a dictionary
In a library, a reference book is a general type of non-fiction book which provides information as opposed to telling a story, essay, commentary, or otherwise supporting a point of view. An almanac is a very general reference book, usually one-volume, with lists of data and information on many topics. An encyclopedia is a book or set of books designed to have more in-depth articles on many topics. A book listing words , their etymology , meanings, and other information is called a dictionary . A book which is a collection of maps is an atlas . A more specific reference book with tables or lists of data and information about a certain topic, often intended for professional use, is often called a handbook . Books which try to list references and abstracts in a certain broad area may be called an index , such as Engineering Index, or abstracts such as chemical abstracts and biological abstracts. An atlas
Books with technical information on how to do something or how to use some equipment are called instruction manuals . Other popular how-to books include cookbooks and home improvement books.
Students typically store and carry textbooks and schoolbooks for
There is a large set of books that are made only to write private ideas, notes, and accounts. These books are rarely published and are typically destroyed or remain private. Notebooks are blank papers to be written in by the user. Students and writers commonly use them for taking notes. Scientists and other researchers use lab notebooks to record their notes. They often feature spiral coil bindings at the edge so that pages may easily be torn out. A Telephone Directory , with business and residence listings.
Address books , phone books , and calendar/appointment books are commonly used on a daily basis for recording appointments, meetings and personal contact information .
Books for recording periodic entries by the user, such as daily information about a journey, are called logbooks or simply logs. A similar book for writing the owner's daily private personal events, information, and ideas is called a diary or personal journal .
Businesses use accounting books such as journals and ledgers to record financial data in a practice called bookkeeping .
There are several other types of books which are not commonly found under this system. Albums are books for holding a group of items belonging to a particular theme, such as a set of photographs , card collections, and memorabilia. One common example is stamp albums , which are used by many hobbyists to protect and organize their collections of postage stamps . Such albums are often made using removable plastic pages held inside in a ringed binder or other similar holder. Picture books are books for children with pictures on every page and less text (or even no text).
Hymnals are books with collections of musical hymns that can typically be found in churches . Prayerbooks or missals are books that contain written prayers and are commonly carried by monks , nuns , and other devoted followers or clergy .
DECODABLE READERS AND LEVELED BOOKS
A leveled book collection is a set of books organized in levels of difficulty from the easy books appropriate for an emergent reader to longer more complex books adequate for advanced readers. Decodable readers or books are a specialized type of leveled books that use decodable text only including controlled lists of words, sentences and stories consistent with the letters and phonics that have been taught to the emergent reader. New sounds and letters are added to higher level decodable books, as the level of instruction progresses, allowing for higher levels of accuracy, comprehension and fluency.
BY PHYSICAL FORMAT
Hardcover books have a stiff binding. Paperback books have cheaper, flexible covers which tend to be less durable. An alternative to paperback is the glossy cover, otherwise known as a dust cover, found on magazines, and comic books. Spiral-bound books are bound by spirals made of metal or plastic. Examples of spiral-bound books include teachers' manuals and puzzle books (crosswords , sudoku ).
Publishing is a process for producing pre-printed books, magazines , and newspapers for the reader/user to buy.
Publishers may produce low-cost, pre-publication copies known as galleys or 'bound proofs' for promotional purposes, such as generating reviews in advance of publication. Galleys are usually made as cheaply as possible, since they are not intended for sale.
Private or personal libraries made up of non-fiction and fiction
books, (as opposed to the state or institutional records kept in
archives ) first appeared in classical Greece . In the ancient world,
the maintaining of a library was usually (but not exclusively) the
privilege of a wealthy individual. These libraries could have been
either private or public, i.e. for people who were interested in using
them. The difference from a modern public library lies in the fact
that they were usually not funded from public sources. It is estimated
that in the city of Rome at the end of the 3rd century there were
around 30 public libraries. Public libraries also existed in other
cities of the ancient Mediterranean region (for example,
The beginning of modern public library begins around 15th century
when individuals started to donate books to towns. The growth of a
public library system in the United States started in the late 19th
century and was much helped by donations from
Andrew Carnegie . This
reflected classes in a society: The poor or the middle class had to
access most books through a public library or by other means while the
rich could afford to have a private library built in their homes. In
the United States the Boston Public
The advent of paperback books in the 20th century led to an explosion of popular publishing. Paperback books made owning books affordable for many people. Paperback books often included works from genres that had previously been published mostly in pulp magazines . As a result of the low cost of such books and the spread of bookstores filled with them (in addition to the creation of a smaller market of extremely cheap used paperbacks) owning a private library ceased to be a status symbol for the rich.
In library and booksellers' catalogues, it is common to include an abbreviation such as "Crown 8vo" to indicate the paper size from which the book is made.
When rows of books are lined on a book holder, bookends are sometimes needed to keep them from slanting.
IDENTIFICATION AND CLASSIFICATION
During the 20th century, librarians were concerned about keeping
track of the many books being added yearly to the
Gutenberg Galaxy .
Through a global society called the International Federation of
Commercial publishers in industrialized countries generally assign
ISBNs to their books, so buyers may presume that the
One of the earliest and most widely known systems of cataloguing
books is the Dewey Decimal System . Another widely known system is the
Bliss bibliographic classification (BC)
Aside from the primary purpose of reading them, books are also used for other ends:
* A book can be an artistic artifact, a piece of art; this is sometimes known as an artists\' book . * A book may be evaluated by a reader or professional writer to create a book review . * A book may be read by a group of people to use as a spark for social or academic discussion, as in a book club . * A book may be studied by students as the subject of a writing and analysis exercise in the form of a book report . * Books are sometimes used for their exterior appearance to decorate a room, such as a study .
Once the book is published, it is put on the market by the
distributors and the bookstores. Meanwhile, his promotion comes from
various media reports.
OTHER FORMS OF SECONDARY SPREAD
In recent years, the book had a second life in the form of reading aloud. This is called public readings of published works, with the assistance of professional readers (often known actors) and in close collaboration with writers, publishers, booksellers, librarians, leaders of the literary world and artists.
Many individual or collective practices exist to increase the number of readers of a book. Among them:
* abandonment of books in public places, coupled or not with the use of the Internet, known as the bookcrossing ; * provision of free books in third places like bars or cafes; * itinerant or temporary libraries; * free public libraries in the area.
EVOLUTION OF THE BOOK INDUSTRY
This form of the book chain has hardly changed since the eighteenth century, and has not always been this way. Thus, the author has asserted gradually with time, and the copyright dates only from the nineteenth century. For many centuries, especially before the invention of printing, each freely copied out books that passed through his hands, adding if necessary his own comments. Similarly, bookseller and publisher jobs have emerged with the invention of printing, which made the book an industrial product, requiring structures of production and marketing.
The invention of the Internet, e-readers, tablets, and projects like and Gutenberg, are likely to strongly change the book industry in the years to come.
PAPER AND CONSERVATION
Main article: Conservation and restoration of books, manuscripts, documents and ephemera Halfbound book with leather and marbled paper .
Paper was first made in China as early as 200 BC, and reached Europe through Muslim territories. At first made of rags, the industrial revolution changed paper-making practices, allowing for paper to be made out of wood pulp. Papermaking in Europe began in the 11th century, although vellum was also common there as page material up until the beginning of the 16th century, vellum being the more expensive and durable option. Printers or publishers would often issue the same publication on both materials, to cater to more than one market.
Paper made from wood pulp became popular in the early 20th century, because it was cheaper than linen or abaca cloth-based papers. Pulp-based paper made books less expensive to the general public. This paved the way for huge leaps in the rate of literacy in industrialised nations, and enabled the spread of information during the Second Industrial Revolution .
Pulp paper, however, contains acid which eventually destroys the paper from within. Earlier techniques for making paper used limestone rollers, which neutralized the acid in the pulp. Books printed between 1850 and 1950 are primarily at risk; more recent books are often printed on acid-free or alkaline paper. Libraries today have to consider mass deacidification of their older collections in order to prevent decay.
Stability of the climate is critical to the long-term preservation of paper and book material. Good air circulation is important to keep fluctuation in climate stable. The HVAC system should be up to date and functioning efficiently. Light is detrimental to collections. Therefore, care should be given to the collections by implementing light control. General housekeeping issues can be addressed, including pest control . In addition to these helpful solutions, a library must also make an effort to be prepared if a disaster occurs, one that they cannot control. Time and effort should be given to create a concise and effective disaster plan to counteract any damage incurred through "acts of God" therefore an emergency management plan should be in place.
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* Tim Parks (August 2017), The Books We Don’t Understand, New York Review of Books
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