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A book is a set or collection of written, printed, illustrated, or blank sheets, made of paper, parchment, or other various material, usually fastened together to hinge at one side. A single sheet within a book is called a leaf, and each side of a leaf is called a page. A book produced in electronic format is known as an electronic book (e-book).

Books may also refer to a literature work, or a main division of such a work. In library and information science, a book is called a monograph, to distinguish it from serial periodicals such as magazines, journals or newspapers. The body of all written works including books is literature. In novels, a book may be divided into several large sections, also called books (Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, etc). A lover of books is usually referred to as a bibliophile, a bibliophilist, or a philobiblist, or, more informally, a bookworm.

A store where books are bought and sold is a bookstore or bookshop. Books can also be borrowed from libraries.

Contents

Etymology

The word book comes from Old English "bōc" which comes from Germanic root "*bōk-", cognate to beech.[1] Similarly, in Slavic languages (e.g. Russian and Bulgarian "буква" (bukva)—"letter") is cognate to "beech". It is thus conjectured that the earliest Indo-European writings may have been carved on beech wood.[2] Similarly, the Latin word codex, meaning a book in the modern sense (bound and with separate leaves), originally meant "block of wood."

History of books

Antiquity

Sumerian language cuneiform script clay tablet, 2400–2200 BC

When writing systems were invented in ancient civilizations, nearly everything that could be written upon—stone, clay, tree bark, metal sheets—was used for writing. Alphabetic writing emerged in Egypt around 1800 BC. The Ancient Egyptians would often times write on papyrus, a plant grown along the Nile River. At first the words were not separated from each other (scriptura continua) and there was no punctuation. Texts were written from right to left, left to right, and even so that alternate lines read in opposite directions. The technical term for this type of writing is 'boustrophedon,' which means literally 'ox-turning' for the way a farmer drives an ox to plough his fields.

Scroll

Egyptian papyrus showing the god Osiris and the weighing of the heart.

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, was used for writing in Ancient Egypt, perhaps as early as the First Dynasty, although the first evidence is from the account books of King Neferirkare Kakai of the Fifth Dynasty (about 2400 BC).[3] Papyrus sheets were glued together to form a scroll. Tree bark such as lime (Latin liber, from there also library) and other materials were also used.[4]

According to Herodotus (History 5:58), the Phoenicians brought writing and papyrus to Greece around the tenth or ninth century BC. The Greek word for papyrus as writing material (biblion) and book (biblos) come from the Phoenician port town Byblos, through which papyrus was exported to Greece.[5] From Greeks we have also the word tome (Greek: τόμος) which originally meant a slice or piece and from there it became to denote "a roll of papyrus". Tomus was used by the Latins with exactly the same meaning as volumen (see also below the explanation by Isidore of Seville).

Whether made from papyrus, parchment, or paper in East Asia, scrolls were the dominant form of book in the Hellenistic, Roman, Chinese and Hebrew 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.

Codex

Woman holding a book (or wax tablets) in the form of the codex. Wall painting from Pompeii, before 79 AD.

Papyrus scrolls were still dominant in the first century AD, as witnessed by the findings in Pompeii. The first written mention of the codex as a form of book is from Martial, in his Apophoreta CLXXXIV at the end of the 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.[6] This change happened gradually during the third and fourth 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. The Christian authors may also have wanted to distinguish their writings from the pagan texts written on scrolls.

A Chinese bamboo book

Wax tablets 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 for modern books (i.e. codex).[7] The etymology of the word codex (block of wood) also suggests that it may have developed from wooden wax tablets.[8]

In the 5th century, Isidore of Seville explained the relation between codex, book and scroll in his Etymologiae (VI.13): "A codex is composed of many books; a book is of one scroll. It is called codex by way of metaphor from the trunks (codex) of trees or vines, as if it were a wooden stock, because it contains in itself a multitude of books, as it were of branches."

Middle Ages

Manuscripts

Folio 14 recto of the 5th century Vergilius Romanus contains an author portrait of Virgil. Note the bookcase (capsa), reading stand and the text written without word spacing in rustic capitals.

The fall of the Roman Empire in the fifth century A.D. saw the decline of the culture of ancient Rome. Papyrus became difficult to obtain due to lack of contact with Egypt, and parchment, which had been used for centuries, became the main writing material.

Monasteries carried on the Latin writing tradition in the Western Roman Empire. Cassiodorus, in the monastery of Vivarium (established around 540), stressed the importance of copying texts.[9] St. Benedict of Nursia, in his Regula Monachorum (completed around the middle of the 6th century) later also promoted reading.[10] The Rule of St. Benedict (Ch. XLVIII), which set aside certain times for reading, greatly influenced the monastic culture of the Middle Ages and is one of the reasons why the clergy were the predominant readers of books. The tradition and style of the Roman Empire still dominated, but slowly the peculiar medieval book culture emerged.

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 ninth century, larger collections held around 500 volumes and even at the end of the Middle Ages, the papal library in Avignon and Paris library of Sorbonne held only around 2,000 volumes.[11]

Burgundian author and scribe Jean Miélot, from his Miracles de Notre Dame), 15th century.

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.[12]

Desk with chained books in the Library of Cesena, Italy.

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. Sometimes the whole parchment was colored purple, and the text was written on it with gold or silver (for example, Codex Argenteus).[13]

Irish monks introduced spacing between words in the seventh 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.[14]

The first books used parchment or vellum (calf skin) 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 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 bars, 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.[15]

Judaism has kept the art of the scribe alive up to the present. According to Jewish tradition, the Torah scroll placed in a synagogue must be written by hand on parchment, and a printed book would not do, though the congregation may use printed prayer books, and printed copies of the Scriptures are used for study outside the synagogue. A sofer (scribe) is a highly respected member of any observant Jewish community.

Paper books

The Arabs revolutionised the book's production and its binding in the medieval Islamic world. They were the first to produce paper books after they learnt paper industry from the Chinese in the 8th century.[16] Particular skills were developed for script writing (Arabic calligraphy), miniatures and bookbinding. The people who worked in making books were called Warraqin or paper professionals. The Arabs made books lighter—sewn with silk and bound with leather covered paste boards, they had a flap that wrapped the book up when not in use. As paper was less reactive to humidity, the heavy boards were not needed. The production of books became a real industry and cities like Marrakech, Morocco, had a street named Kutubiyyin or book sellers which contained more than 100 bookshops in the 12th century; the famous Koutoubia Mosque is named so because of its location in this street. In the words of Don Baker:

The world of Islam has produced some of the most beautiful books ever created. The need to write down the Revelations which the Prophet Muhammad, may peace be upon him, received, fostered the desire to beautify the object which conveyed these words and initiated this ancient craft. Nowhere else, except perhaps in China, has writing been held in such high esteem. Splendid illumination was added with gold and vibrant colours, and the whole book contained and protected by beautiful bookbindings.[17]

Modern paper books are printed on papers which are designed specifically for the publication of 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. Typically, books papers are light weight papers 60 to 90 g/m² and often specified by their caliper/substance ratios (volume basis). For example, a bulky 80 g/m² paper may have a caliper of 120 micrometres (0.12 mm) which would be Volume 15 (120×10/80) where as a low bulk 80 g/m² may have a caliper of 88 micrometres, giving a volume 11. This volume basis then allows the calculation of a books PPI (printed pages per inch) which is an important factor for the design of book jackets and the binding of the finished book. Different paper qualities are used as book paper depending on type of book: Machine finished coated papers, woodfree uncoated papers, coated fine papers and special fine papers are common paper grades.

Wood block printing

The intricate frontispiece of the Diamond Sutra from Tang Dynasty China, 868 AD (British Museum)

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 220AD), 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 China 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

"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 Pi Sheng made movable type of earthenware circa 1045, but there are no known surviving examples of his printing. Metal movable type was invented in Korea during the Goryeo Dynasty (around 1230), but was not widely used: one reason being the enormous Chinese character set. Around 1450, in what is commonly regarded as an independent invention, Johannes Gutenberg invented movable type in Europe, along with innovations in casting the type based on a matrix and hand mould. This invention gradually made books less expensive to produce, and more widely available.

A 15th century incunabulum. Notice the blind-tooled cover, corner bosses and clasps.

Early printed books, single sheets and images which were created before the year 1501 in Europe are known as 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.[18]

Modern world

Steam-powered printing presses became popular in the early 1800s. These machines could print 1,100 sheets per hour, but workers could only set 2,000 letters per hour.

Monotype and linotype presses were introduced in the late 19th century. They could set more than 6,000 letters per hour and an entire line of type at once.

The centuries after the 15th century were thus spent on improving both the printing press and the conditions for freedom of the press through the gradual relaxation of restrictive censorship laws. See also intellectual property, public domain, copyright. In mid-20th century, Europe book production had risen to over 200,000 titles per year.

Book manufacturing in the modern world

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 years of the 20th century. While there was of course more mechanization, Gutenberg would have had no difficulty in understanding what was going on if he had visited a book printer in 1900.

Gutenberg’s “invention” was the use of movable metal types, assembled into words, lines, and pages and then printed by letterpress. In letterpress printing ink is spread onto the tops of raised metal type, and is transferred onto a sheet of paper which is pressed against the type. Sheet-fed letterpress printing is still available but tends to be used for collector’s books and is now more of an art form than a commercial technique (see Letterpress).

Today, the majority of books are printed by offset lithography in which an image of the material to be printed is photographically or digitally transferred to a flexible metal plate where it is developed to exploit the antipathy between grease (the ink) and water. When the plate is mounted on the press, water is spread over it. The developed areas of the plate repel water thus allowing the ink to adhere to only those parts of the plate which are to print. The ink is then offset onto a rubbery blanket (to prevent water from soaking the paper) and then finally to the paper (see 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. [see Imposition] 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. Trimming involves cutting approximately 1/8” off top, bottom and fore-edge (the edge opposite to the spine) as part of the binding process in order to remove the folds so that the pages can be opened. 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. The basic standard commercial book sizes in America, always expressed as width x height in USA; some examples are: 4-1/4” x 7” (rack size paperback) 5-1/8” x 7-5/8” (digest size paperback) 5-1/2” x 8-1/4” 5-1/2” x 8-1/2” 6-1/8” x 9-1/4” 7” x 10” 8-1/2” x 11”. These “standard” trim sizes will often vary slightly depending on the particular printing presses used, and on the imprecision of the trimming operation. Of course other trim sizes are available, and some publishers favor sizes not listed here which they might nominate as “standard” as well, such as 6” x 9”, 8” x 10”. In Britain the equivalent standard sizes differ slightly, as well as now being expressed in millimeters, and with height preceding width. Thus the UK equivalent of 6-1/8” x 9-1/4” is 234 x 156 mm. British conventions in this regard prevail throughout the English speaking world, except for USA. The European book manufacturing industry works to a completely different set of standards.

Some books, particularly those with shorter runs (i.e. of which fewer copies are to be made) 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. On a sheet-fed press a stack of sheets of paper stands at one end of the press, and each sheet passes through the press individually. The paper will be printed on both sides and delivered, flat, as a stack of paper at the other end of the press. These sheets then have to be folded on another machine which uses bars, rollers and cutters to fold the sheet up into one or more signatures. A signature is a section of a book, usually of 32 pages, but sometimes 16, 48 or even 64 pages. After the signatures are all folded they are gathered: placed in sequence in bins over a circulating belt onto which one signature from each bin is dropped. Thus as the 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 ready to go into the gathering line. Notice that when the book is being printed it is being printed one (or two) signatures at a time, not one complete book at a time. Thus if there are to be 10,000 copies printed, the press will run 10,000 of the first form (the pages imaged onto the first plate and its back-up plate, representing one or two signatures), then 10,000 of the next form, and so on till all the signatures have been printed. Actually, because there is a known average spoilage rate in each of the steps in the book’s progress through the manufacturing system, if 10,000 books are to be made, the printer will print between 10,500 and 11,000 copies so that subsequent spoilage will still allow the delivery of the ordered quantity of books. Sources of spoilage tend to be mainly make-readies.

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. The main part of making-ready is however getting the ink/water balance right, and ensuring that the inking is even across the whole width of the paper. This is done by running paper through the press and printing waste pages while adjusting the press to improve quality. Desitometers are used to ensure even inking and consistency from one form to another. 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 the last century there were still many trade binders – stand-alone binding companies which did no printing, specializing in binding alone. At that time, largely because of the dominance of letterpress printing, the pattern of the industry was for typesetting and printing to take 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 it was almost invariable that 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 the increasing computerization of the process 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. A paperback binding line (a number of pieces of machinery linked by conveyor belts) involves few steps. The gathered signatures, book blocks, will be fed into the line where they will one by one be gripped by plates converging from each side of the book, turned spine up and advanced towards a gluing station. En route the spine of the book block will be ground off leaving a roughened edge to the tightly gripped collection of pages. The grinding leaves fibers which will grip onto the glue which is then spread onto the spine of the book. Covers then meet up with the book blocks, and one cover is dropped onto the glued spine of each book block, and is pressed against the spine by rollers. The book is then carried forward to the trimming station, where a three-knife trimmer will simultaneously cut the top and bottom and the fore-edge of the paperback to leave clear square edges. The books are then packed into cartons, or packed on skids, and shipped.

Binding a hardback is more complicated. Look at a hardback book and you will see the cover overlaps the pages by about 1/8” all round. These overlaps are called squares. The blank piece of paper inside the cover is called the endpaper, or endsheet: it is of somewhat stronger paper than the rest of the book as it is the endpapers that hold the book into the case. The endpapers will be tipped to the first and last signatures before the separate signatures are placed into the bins on the gathering line. Tipping involves spreading some glue along the spine edge of the folded endpaper and pressing the endpaper against the signature. The gathered signatures are then glued along the spine, and the book block is trimmed, like the paperback, but will continue after this to the rounder and backer. The book block together with its endpapers will be gripped from the sides and passed under a roller with presses it from side to side, smashing the spine down and out around the sides so that the entire book takes on a rounded cross section: convex on the spine, concave at the fore-edge, with “ears” projecting on either side of the spine. Then the spine is glued again, a paper liner is stuck to it and headbands and footbands are applied. Next a crash lining (an open weave cloth somewhat like a stronger cheesecloth) is usually applied, overlapping the sides of the spine by an inch or more. Finally the inside of the case, which has been constructed and foil-stamped off-line on a separate machine, is glued on either side (but not on the spine area) and placed over the book block. This entire sandwich is now gripped from the outside and pressed together to form a solid bond between the endpapers and the inside of the case. The crash lining, which is glued to the spine of the pages, but not the spine of the case, is held between the endpapers and the case sides, and in fact provides most of the strength holding the book block into the case. The book will then be jacketed (most often by hand, allowing this stage to be an inspection stage also) before being packed ready for shipment.

The sequence of events can vary slightly, and usually the entire sequence does not occur in one continuous pass through a binding line. What has been described above is unsewn binding, now increasingly common. The signatures of a book can also be held together by Smyth sewing. Needles pass through the spine fold of each signature in succession, from the outside to the center of the fold, sewing the pages of the signature together and each signature to its neighbors. McCain sewing, often used in schoolbook binding, involves drilling holes through the entire book and sewing through all the pages from front to back near the spine edge. Both of these methods mean that the folds in the spine of the book will not be ground off in the binding line. This is true of another technique, notch binding, where gashes about an inch long are made at intervals through the fold in the spine of each signature, parallel to the spine direction. In the binding line glue is forced into these “notches” right to the center of the signature, so that every pair of pages in the signature is bonded to every other one, just as in the Smyth sewn book. 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. Metal dies, photoengraved elsewhere, are mounted in the stamping machine and rolls of foil are positioned to pass between the dies and the case to be stamped. Heat and pressure cause the foil to detach from its backing and adhere to the case. Foils come in various shades of gold and silver and in a variety pigment colors, and by careful setup quite elaborate effects can be achieved by using different rolls of foil on the one book. Cases can also be made from paper which has been printed separately and then protected with clear film lamination. A three-piece case is made similarly but has a different material on the spine and overlapping onto the sides: so it starts out as three pieces of material, one each of a cheaper material for the sides and the different, stronger material for the spine.

Recent developments in book manufacturing include the development of digital printing. Book pages are printed, in much the same way as an office copier works, using toner rather than ink. Each book is printed in one pass, not as separate signatures. Digital printing has permitted the manufacture of much smaller quantities than offset, in part because of the absence of make readies and of spoilage. One might think of a web press as printing quantities over 2000, quantities from 250 to 2000 being printed on sheet-fed presses, and digital presses doing quantities below 250. These numbers are of course only approximate and will vary from supplier to supplier, and from book to book depending on its characteristics. Digital printing has opened up the possibility of print-on-demand, where no books are printed until after an order is received from a customer.

Transition to digital format

The term e-book is a contraction of "electronic book"; it refers to a digital version of a conventional print book. 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 & Noble Nook or the Amazon Kindle. These devices attempt to mimic the experience of reading a print book.

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, or in the form of e-books. 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[citation needed]. 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 print on demand, which make it possible to print as few as one million books at a time, have made self-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.

Book structure

Scheme of common book design
  1. Belly band
  2. Flap
  3. Endpaper
  4. Book cover
  5. Top edge
  6. Fore edge
  7. Tail edge
  8. Right page, recto
  9. Left page, verso
  10. Gutter

The common structural parts of a book include:

Binding of a book from separate papers

A thin marker, commonly made of paper or card, used to keep one's place in a book is a bookmark. Bookmarks were used throughout the medieval period,[19] consisting usually of a small parchment strip attached to the edge of folio (or a piece of cord attached to headband). Bookmarks in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries were narrow silk ribbons bound into the book and become widespread in the 1850s. They were usually made from silk, embroidered fabrics or leather. Not until the 1880s did paper and other materials become more common.

The process of physically assembling a book from a number of folded or unfolded sheets of paper is bookbinding.

Sizes

Real-size facsimile of Codex Gigas

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 sixteen 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.
  • Atlas Folio: up to 25" (ca 63 cm) tall.
  • Double Elephant Folio: up to 50" (ca 127 cm) tall.

The largest extant medieval manuscript in the world is Codex Gigas 92 × 50 × 22 cm. The world's largest book made of stone is in Kuthodaw Pagoda (Myanmar).

Types of books

Types of books according to their contents

A common separation by content are fiction and non-fictional books. By no means are books limited to this classification, but it is a separation that can be found in most collections, libraries, and bookstores.

Fiction

Many of the books published today are fictitious stories. They are in-part or completely untrue or fantasy. 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 fictional 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.[20] A novella is a term sometimes used for fictional 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 are not universally established.

Comic books or graphic novels are books in which the story is not told, but illustrated.

Non-fiction

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 study purposes. Elementary school pupils often use workbooks, which are published with spaces or blanks to be filled by them for study or homework. In US higher education, it is common for a student to take an exam using a blue book.

A page from a notebook used as hand written diary

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 spork. 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.

Other types

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 smolder.

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.

Types of books according to their binding or cover

Hardcover books
Paperback books

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.

Collections of books

Celsus Library was built in 135 A.D. and could house around 12,000 scrolls.

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 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 third century there were around 30 public libraries. Public libraries also existed in other cities of the ancient Mediterranean region (e.g. Library of Alexandria).[21] Later, in the Middle Ages, monasteries and universities had also libraries that could be accessible to general public. Typically not the whole collection was available to public, the books could not be borrowed and often were chained to reading stands to prevent theft.

The beginning of modern public library begins around 15th century when individuals started to donate books to towns.[22] 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.

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 Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), they devised a series of tools including the International Standard Bibliographic Description (ISBD).

ISBN number with barcode

Each book is specified by an International Standard Book Number, or ISBN, which is unique to every edition of every book produced by participating publishers, world wide. It is managed by the ISBN Society. An ISBN has four parts: the first part is the country code, the second the publisher code, and the third the title code. The last part is a check digit, and can take values from 0–9 and X (10). The EAN Barcodes numbers for books are derived from the ISBN by prefixing 978, for Bookland, and calculating a new check digit.

Commercial publishers in industrialized countries generally assign ISBNs to their books, so buyers may presume that the ISBN is part of a total international system, with no exceptions. However many government publishers, in industrial as well as developing countries, do not participate fully in the ISBN system, and publish books which do not have ISBNs.

A large or public collection requires a catalogue. Codes called "call numbers" relate the books to the catalogue, and determine their locations on the shelves. Call numbers are based on a Library classification system. The call number is placed on the spine of the book, normally a short distance before the bottom, and inside.

Institutional or national standards, such as ANSI/NISO Z39.41 - 1997, establish the correct way to place information (such as the title, or the name of the author) on book spines, and on "shelvable" book-like objects, such as containers for DVDs, video tapes and software.

Books on library shelves with bookends, and call numbers visible on the spines

One of the earliest and most widely known systems of cataloguing books is the Dewey Decimal System. This system has fallen out of use in some places, mainly because of a Eurocentric bias and other difficulties applying the system to modern libraries. However, it is still used by most public libraries in America. The Library of Congress Classification system is more popular in university libraries.[citation needed]

Information about books and authors can be stored in databases like online general-interest book databases.

Metadata about a book may include its ISBN or other classification number (see above), the names of contributors (author, editor, illustrator) and publisher, its date and size, and the language of the text.

Classification systems

Uses for books

Aside from the primary purpose of reading them, books are also used for other ends:

  • A book can be an artistic artifact; 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.

Paper and conservation issues

Halfbound book with leather and marbled paper.

Though papermaking in Europe had begun around the 11th century, up until the beginning of 16th century vellum and paper were produced congruent to one another, 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 was first made in China, as early as 200 B.C., 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.

Paper made from wood pulp was introduced 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.

However pulp paper contained acid, that 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 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.

Stability of the climate is critical to the long-term preservation of paper and book material.[23] 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 a emergency management plan should be in place.

The proper care of books takes into account the possibility of physical and chemical damage to the cover and text. Books are best stored out of direct sunlight, in reduced lighting, at cool temperatures, and at moderate humidity. They need the support of surrounding volumes to maintain their shape, so it is desirable to shelve them by size.

See also

Notes and references

  1. ^ book - Definitions from Dictionary.com
  2. ^ Northvegr - Holy Language Lexicon
  3. ^ Avrin, Leila (1991). Scribes, script, and books: the book arts from antiquity to the Renaissance. New York, New York: American Library Association; The British Library. pp. 83. ISBN 9780838905227. 
  4. ^ Dard Hunter. Papermaking: History and Technique of an Ancient Craft New ed. Dover Publications 1978, p. 12.
  5. ^ Leila Avrin. Scribes, Script and Books, pp. 144–145.
  6. ^ The Cambridge History of Early Christian Literature. Edd. Frances Young, Lewis Ayres, Andrew Louth, Ron White. Cambridge University Press 2004, pp. 8–9.
  7. ^ Leila Avrin. Scribes, Script and Books, p. 173.
  8. ^ Bischoff, Bernhard (1990). Latin palaeography antiquity and the Middle Ages. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 11. ISBN 0521364736. 
  9. ^ Leila Avrin. Scribes, Script and Books, pp. 207–208.
  10. ^ Theodore Maynard. Saint Benedict and His Monks. Staples Press Ltd 1956, pp. 70–71.
  11. ^ Martin D. Joachim. Historical Aspects of Cataloguing and Classification. Haworth Press 2003, p. 452.
  12. ^ Edith Diehl. Bookbinding: Its Background and Technique. Dover Publications 1980, pp. 14–16.
  13. ^ Bernhard Bischoff. Latin Palaeography, pp. 16–17.
  14. ^ Paul Saenger. Space Between Words: The Origins of Silent Reading. Stanford University Press 1997.
  15. ^ Bernhard Bischoff. Latin Palaeography, pp. 42–43.
  16. ^ Al-Hassani, Woodcock and Saoud, "1001 Inventions, Muslim heritage in Our World", FSTC Publishing, 2006, reprinted 2007, pp.218-219.
  17. ^ Baker, Don, "The golden age of Islamic bookbinding", Ahlan Wasahlan, (Public Relations Div., Saudi Arabian Airlines, Jeddah), 1984. pp. 13-15 [13]
  18. ^ Clapham, Michael, "Printing" in A History of Technology, Vol 2. From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution, edd. Charles Singer et al. (Oxford 1957), p. 377. Cited from Elizabeth L. Eisenstein, The Printing Press as an Agent of Change (Cambridge University, 1980).
  19. ^ For a 9th century Carolingian bookmark see: Szirmai, J. A. (1999). The archaeology of medieval bookbinding. Aldershot: Ashgate. pp. 123. ISBN 0859679047.  For a 15th century bookmark see Medeltidshandskrift 34, Lund University Library.
  20. ^ Edwin Mcdowell (1989-10-30). gst/fullpage.html?res=950DE0D7173BF933A05753C1A96F948260 "The Media Business; Publishers Worry After Fiction Sales Weaken". New York Times. http://query.nytimes.com gst/fullpage.html?res=950DE0D7173BF933A05753C1A96F948260. Retrieved 2008-01-25. 
  21. ^ Miriam A. Drake, Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science (Marcel Dekker, 2003), "Public Libraries, History".
  22. ^ Miriam A. Drake, Encyclopedia of Library, "Public Libraries, History".
  23. ^ Patkus, Beth (2003), Assessing Preservation Needs, A Self-Survey Guide, Andover: Northeast Document Conservation Center 

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Books article)

From Wikiquote

There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written. - Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891, preface
Knowing I lov'd my books, he furnish'd me From mine own library with volumes that I prize above my dukedom. ~ William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act 1 scene 2

Quotations about books:

Sourced

  • One reader is better than another in proportion as he is able of a greater range of activity in reading and exerts more effort.
  • Why is marking a book indespensible to reading it? First, it keeps you awake — not merely conscious, but wide awake. Second, reading, if it is active, is thinking, and thinking tends to express itself in wordes, spoken or written...Third, writing your reactions down helps you to remember the thoughts of the author...Marking a book is literally an expression of your differences or your agreements with the author, It is the highest respect you can pay him.
  • Reading maketh a full man, conference a ready man, and writing an exact man.
  • Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested.
  • The covers of this book are too far apart.
  • Reading well is one of the great pleasures that solitude can afford you.
    • Harold Bloom, quoted in O Magazine (April 2003)
  • Reading is going toward something that is about to be, and no one yet knows what it will be.
    • Italo Calvino, If on a Winter's Night a Traveler (1979), translated by William Weaver (1981), p. 72
  • There is no such thing on earth as an uninteresting subject; the only thing that can exist is an uninterested person.
  • There is a great deal of difference between the eager man who wants to read a book, and the tired man who wants a book to read.
  • Many books require no thought from those who read them, and for a very simple reason; they made no such demand upon those who wrote them.
  • Whatever we read from intense curiosity gives us a model of how we should always read.
  • And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
  • Books are not made to be believed, but to be subjected to inquiry.
    • Umberto Eco, Il nome della rosa [The Name of the Rose] (1980), said by character William of Baskerville, originally in Italian.
  • There are magic moments, involving great physical fatigue and intense motor excitement, that produce visions of people known in the past. As I learned later from the delightful little book of the Abbé de Bucquoy, there are also visions of books as yet unwritten.
    • Umberto Eco, Il nome della rosa [The Name of the Rose] (1980)
  • Never read any book that is not a year old.
  • 'Tis the good reader that makes the good book; in every book he finds passages which seem confidences or asides hidden from all else and unmistakenly meant for his ear.
  • In the highest civilization, the book is still the highest delight. He who has once known its satisfactions is provided with a resource against calamity.
  • Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers.
  • Books won't stay banned. They won't burn. Ideas won't go to jail. In the long run of history, the censor and the inquisitor have always lost. The only sure weapon against bad ideas is better ideas.
  • Truly, associating with bad books is often more dangerous than associating with bad people.
    • Original German: "Wahrhaftig, der Umgang mit schlechten Büchern ist oft gefährlicher als mit schlechten Menschen."
    • Wilhelm Hauff, Das Buch und die Leserwelt
  • Where one begins by burning books, one will end up burning people.
    • Original German: "Dort, wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man am Ende auch Menschen."
    • Heinrich Heine in Almansor
  • Life-transforming ideas have always come to me through books.
    • Bell Hooks, quoted in O Magazine (December 2003)
  • Books get older as well; their body also wears out, but unlike us, their brain remains forever young!
  • Gutenberg, your printing press has been violated by this evil book, Mein Kampf!
  • Any of us might live a long life or pass away tomorrow. I have come to believe that living your well-read life is measured not by the number of books read at the end of your life but by whether you are in book love today, tomorrow, and next week.
    • Steve Leveen, The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life (2005), p. 7
  • A single book at the right time can change our views dramatically, give a quantum boost to our knowledge, help us construct a whole new outlook on the world and our life. Isn't it odd that we don't seek those experiences more systematically?
    • Steve Leveen, The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life (2005), p. 11
  • The first step to retention is to briefly review your book almost immediately after finishing it. It's easier if you've marked passages and taken notes in the margins and on the endpapers. You can then go back through your book, reminding yourself why you marked the particular passages and wrote the commentary you did. This may encourage you to add to your marginalia or write longer notes elsewhere.
    • Steve Leveen, The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life (2005), p. 39
  • You will be surprised what psychological motivation there is in your having physical possession of the books you plan to read.
  • When a book and a head collide and there is a hollow sound, is that always in the book?
    • Original German: "Wenn ein Buch und ein Kopf zusammenstoßen und es klingt hohl, ist das allemal im Buche?"
    • Georg Christoph Lichtenberg Vermischte Schriften, E (1775 - 1776), 103
  • A sure sign of a good book is that you like it more the older you get.
    • Georg Christoph Lichtenberg Vermischte Schriften, K (1789-1793), 351
    • Original German: "Ein sicheres Zeichen von einem guten Buche ist, wenn es einem immer besser gefällt, je älter man wird."
  • The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,
    And all the sweet serenity of books.
  • When I read a book I seem to read it with my eyes only, but now and then I come across a passage, perhaps only a phrase, which has a meaning for me, and it becomes part of me.
  • As good almost kill a man as kill a good book. Who kills a man kills a reasonable creature, God's image; but he who destroys a good book, kills reason itself, kills the image of God, as it were in the eye.
  • A good book is the precious lifeblood of a master spirit, embalmed and treasured up on purpose to a life beyond life.
  • A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man's mind can get both provocation and privacy.
  • Just the knowledge that a good book is awaiting one at the end of a long day makes that day happier.
  • Affect not as some do that bookish ambition to be stored with books and have well-furnished libraries, yet keep their heads empty of knowledge; to desire to have many books, and never to use them, is like a child that will have a candle burning by him all the while he is sleeping.
  • You will get little or nothing from the printed page if you bring it nothing but your eye.
  • Literature is news that stays news.
  • Even big collections of ordinary books distort space and time, as can readily be proved by anyone who has been around a really old-fashioned second-hand bookshop, one of those that has more staircases than storeys and those rows of shelves that end in little doors that are surely too small for a full sized human to enter.
    The relevant equation is Knowledge = Power = Energy = Matter = Mass; a good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read. Mass distorts space into polyfractal L-space, in which Everywhere is also Everywhere Else.
    All libraries are connected in L-space by the bookwormholes created by the strong space-time distortions found in any large collection of books. Only a very few librarians learn the secret, and there are inflexible rules about making use of the fact — because it amounts to time travel.
    The three rules of the Librarians of Time and Space are: (1) Silence; (2) Books must be returned no later than the last date shown, and (3) the nature of causality must not be interfered with.
  • Give me a man or woman who has read a thousand books and you give me an interesting companion. Give me a man or woman who has read perhaps three and you give me a dangerous enemy indeed.
    • Anne Rice, The Witching Hour (1990), p. 261
  • No one ever reads a book. He reads himself through books, either to discover or to control himself. And the most objective books are the most deceptive. The greatest book is not the one whose message engraves itself on the brain, as a telegraphic message engraves itself on the ticker-tape, but the one whose vital impact opens up other viewpoints, and from writer to reader spreads the fire that is fed by the various essences, until it becomes a vast conflagration leaping from forest to forest.
  • Books ... are like lobster shells, we surround ourselves with 'em, then we grow out of 'em and leave 'em behind, as evidence of our earlier stages of development.
  • A beggar's book out-worths a noble's blood.
  • Knowing I lov'd my books, he furnish'd me
    From mine own library with volumes that
    I prize above my dukedom.
  • People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading.
  • When I step into this library, I cannot understand why I ever step out of it.
  • How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book.
  • A truly good book is something as natural, and as unexpectedly and unaccountably fair and perfect, as a wild-flower discovered on the prairies of the West or in the jungles of the East.
  • No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading now, or surrender yourself to self-ignorance.
    • "On Reading", Good Reading: A Helpful Guide for Serious Readers, created by a group chaired by Atwood H. Townsend, NYU professor
  • A good book is the best of friends, the same today and forever.
  • There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written.
    • Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891), Preface

See also

External links

Wikipedia
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Source material

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The Book
disambiguation
This is a disambiguation page, which lists works which share the same title. If an article link referred you here, please consider editing it to point directly to the intended page.


The Book may refer to:


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

BOOK, the common name for any literary production of some bulk, now applied particularly to a printed composition forming a volume, or, if in more than one volume, a single organic literary work. The word is also used descriptively for the internal divisions or sections of a comprehensive work.

The word "book" is found with variations of form and gender in all the Teutonic languages, the original form postulated for it being a strong feminine Boks, which must have been used in the sense of a writing-tablet. The most obvious connexion of this is with the old English boc, a beech tree, and though this is not free from philological difficulties, no probable alternative has been suggested.

As early as 2400 B.C., in Babylonia, legal decisions, revenue accounts, &c. were inscribed in cuneiform characters on clay tablets and placed in jars, arranged on shelves and labelled by clay tablets attached by straws. In the 7th century B.C. a library of literary works written on such tablets existed at Nineveh, founded by Sargan (721-705 B.C.). As in the case of the "Creation" series at the British Museum the narrative was sometimes continued from one tablet to another, and some of the tablets are inscribed with entries forming a catalogue of the library. These clay tablets are perhaps entitled to be called books, but they are out of the direct ancestry of the modern printed book with which we are here chiefly concerned. One of the earliest direct ancestors of this extant is a roll of eighteen columns in Egyptian hieratic writing of about the 25th century B.C. in the Musee de Louvre at Paris, preserving the maxims of Ptah-hetep. Papyrus, the material on which the manuscript (known as the Papyrus Prisse) is written, was made from the pith of a reed chiefly found in Egypt, and is believed to have been in use as a writing material as early as about 4000 B.C. It continued to be the usual vehicle of writing until the early centuries of the Christian era, was used for pontifical bulls until A.D. 1022, and occasionally even later; while in Coptic manuscripts, for which its use had been revived in the 7th century, it was employed as late as about A.D. 1250. It was from the name by which they called the papyrus, /3113Xos or 00Xos, that the Greeks formed (g3Aiov, their word for a book, the plural of which (mistaken for a feminine singular) has given us our own word Bible. In the 2nd century B.C. Eumenes II., king of Pergamus, finding papyrus hard to procure, introduced improvements into the preparations of the skins of sheep and calves for writing purposes, and was rewarded by the name of his kingdom being preserved in the word pergamentum, whence our "parchment," by which the dressed material is known. In the 10th century the supremacy which parchment had gradually established was attacked by the introduction from the East of a new writing material made from a pulp of linen rags, and the name of the vanquished papyrus was transferred to this new rival. Papermills were set up in Europe in the 12th century, and the use of paper gained ground, though not very rapidly, until on the invention of printing, the demand for a cheap material for books, and the ease with which paper could be worked on a press, gave it a practical monopoly. This it preserved until nearly the end of the 19th century, when substances mainly composed of woodpulp, esparto grass and clay largely took its place, while continuing, as in the transition from papyrus to linen-pulp, to pass under the same name (see Paper) .

So long as the use of papyrus was predominant the usual form of a book was that of the volumen or roll, wound round a stick, or sticks. The modern form of book, called by the Latins codex (a word originally used for the stump of a tree, or block of wood, and thence for the three-leaved tablets into which the block was sawn) was coming into fashion in Martial's time at Rome, and gained ground in proportion as parchment superseded papyrus. The volumen as it was unrolled revealed a series of narrow columns of writing, and the influence of this arrangement is seen in the number of columns in the earliest codices. Thus in the Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus of the Bible, both of the 4th century, there are respectively four and three columns to a page; in the Codex Alexandrinus (5th century) only two; in the Codex Bezae (6th century) only one, and from this date to the invention of printing, while there were great changes in handwriting, the arrangement of books changed very little, single or double columns being used as was found convenient. In the external form of books there was much the same conservatism. In the Codex Amiatinus written in England in the 8th century one of the miniatures shows a book in a red leather cover, and the arrangement of the pattern on this curiously resembles that of the 15th-century red leather bindings predominant in the Biblioteca Laurenziana at Florence, in which the codex itself is preserved. In the same way some of the small stamps used in Oxford bindings in the 15th century are nearly indistinguishable from those used in England three centuries earlier. Much fuller details as to the history of written books in these as well as other respects will be found in the article Manuscript, to which the following account of the fortunes of books after the invention of printing must be regarded as supplementary.

Between a manuscript written in a formal book-hand and an early printed copy of the same work, printed in the same district as the manuscript had been written, the difference in general appearance was very slight. The printer's type (see Typography) would as a rule be based on a handwriting considered by the scribes appropriate to works of the same class; the chapter headings, headlines, initial-letters, paragraph marks, and in some cases illustrations, would be added by hand in a style which might closely resemble the like decorations in the manuscript from which the text was being printed; there would be no title-page, and very probably no statement of any kind that the book was printed, or as to where, when or by whom it was produced. Information as to these points, if given at all, was reserved for a paragraph at the end of the book, called by bibliographers a colophon, to which the printer often attached a device consisting of his arms, or those of the town in which he worked, or a fanciful design. These devices are sometimes beautiful and often take the place of a statement of the printer's name, Many facsimiles or copies of them have been published.' The first dated title-page known 2 is a nine-line paragraph on an otherwise blank page giving the title of the book, Sermo ad populism predicabilis in festo presentacionis Beatissime Marie Semper Virginis, with some words in its praise, the date 1470 in roman numerals, and a reference to further information on the next page. The book in which this title-page occurs was printed by Arnold ther Hoernen at Cologne. Six years later Erhard Ratdolt and his partners at Venice printed their names and the date, together with some verses describing the book, on the titlepage of a Latin calendar, and surrounded the whole with a border in four pieces. For another twenty years, however, when titlepages were used at all, they usually consisted merely of the short title of the book, with sometimes a woodcut or the printer's (subsequently the publisher's) device beneath it, decoration being more often bestowed on the first page of text,which was sometimes surrounded by an ornamental border. Title-pages completed by the addition of the name and address of printer or publisher, and also by the date, did not become common till about 1520.

While the development of the title-page was thus slow the completion of the book, independently of handwork, in other respects was fairly rapid. Printed illustrations appear first in the form of rude woodcuts in some small books produced at Bamberg by Albrecht Pfister about 1461. Pagination and headlines were first used by ther Hoernen at Cologne in 1470 and 1471; printed signatures to guide binders in arranging the quires cor rectly (see Bibliography And Bibliology) by Johann Koelhoff, also at Cologne in 1472. Illustrations abound in the books printed at Augsburg in the early 'seventies, and in the 'eighties are common in Germany, France and the Low Countries,while in Italy their full development dated from about 1490. Experiments were made in both Italy and France with illustrations engraved on copper, but in the 15th century these met with no success.

Bound with wooden boards covered with stamped leather, or with half of the boards left uncovered, many of the earliest printed books are immensely large and heavy, especially the great choir-books, the Bibles and the Biblical and legal commentaries, in which a great mass of notes surrounds the text. The paper on which these large books were printed was also extraordinarily thick and strong. For more popular books small folio was at first a favourite size, but towards the end of the century small thin quartos were much in vogue. Psalters, books of hours, 1 Works especially devoted to these facsimiles are: - Berjeau's Early Dutch, German and English Printers' Marks (London, 1866); W. Roberts's Printers' Marks (London, 1893); Silvestre's Marques typographiques (French; Paris, 1853-1867); Die Buchermarken oder Buchdrucker and Verlegerzeichen (Strassburg, 1892-1898), the successive parts containing the devices used in Alsace, Italy, Basel, Frankfort, Mainz and Cologne; and Marques typographiques des imprimeurs et libraires qui ont exerce dans les Pays-Bas (Gand, 1894). Numerous devices are also reproduced in histories of printing and in volumes of facsimiles of early types.

2 An edition of a bull of Pope Pius II. in the John Rylands library, Manchester, in types used by Fust and Schoeffer at Mainz, bears printed on the top of the first page the words "Dis ist die bul zu dutsch die unser allerheiligster vatter der bapst Pius herusgesant hait widder die snoden ungleubigen turcken." This is attributed to the year 1463, and is claimed as the first book with a printed title-page.

and other prayer-books were practically the only very small books in use. Owing to changes, not only in the value of money but in the coinage, the cost of books in the 25th century is extremely difficult to ascertain. A vellum copy of the first printed Bible (Mainz, c. 1455) in two large folio volumes, when rubricated and illuminated, is said to have been worth ioo florins. In 1467 the bishop of Aleria writing to Pope Paul II. speaks of the introduction of printing having reduced prices to one-fifth of what they had previously been. Fifteen "Legends" bequeathed by Caxton to St Margaret's, Westminster, were sold at prices varying from 6s. 8d. to 5s. This would be cheap for a large work like the Golden Legend, but the bequest was more probably of copies of the Sarum Legenda, or Lectionary, a much smaller book.

16th Century

The popularization of the small octavo by Aldus at Venice in i 501 and the introduction in these handy books of a new type, the italic, had far-reaching consequences. Italics grew steadily in favour during the greater part of the century, and about 1570 had almost become the, standard vernacular type of Italy. In France also they were very popular, the attempt to introduce a rival French cursive type (lettres de civilite) attaining no success. In England they gained only slight popularity, but roman type, which had not been used at all in the 15th century, made steady progress in its contest with black letter, which by the end of the century was little used save for Bibles and proclamations. The modern practice in the use of i and j, a and v dates from about 1580, though not firmly established till the reign of Charles I.

In the second quarter of the 16th century the French printers at Paris and Lyons halved the size of the Aldine octavos in their small sextodecimos, which found a ready market, though not a lasting one, the printers of Antwerp and Leiden ousting them with still smaller books in 24mo or small twelves. These little books were printed on paper much thinner than had previously been used. The size and weight of books was also reduced by the substitution of pasteboards for wooden sides. Gold tooling came into use on bindings, and in the second half of the century very elaborate decoration was in vogue in France until checked by a sumptuary law. On the other hand a steady decline in the quality of paper combined with the abandonment of the old simple outline woodcuts for much more ambitious designs made it increasingly difficult for printers to do justice to the artists' work, and woodcuts, at first in the Low Countries and afterwards in England and elsewhere, were gradually superseded by copperplates printed separately from the text. At the beginning of this century in England a ballad or Christmas carol sold for a halfpenny and thin quarto chapbooks for 4d. (a price which lasted through the century), the Great Bible of 1541 was priced .at Ios. in sheets and 12S. bound, Edward VI.'s prayer-book (1549) at 2s. 2d. unbound, and 3s. 8d. in paste or boards; Sidney's Arcadia and other works in 1598 sold for 9s.

r7th Century. - Although the miniature editions issued by the Elzevirs at Leiden, especially those published about 1635, have attracted collectors, printing in the 17th century was at its worst, reaching its lowest depths in England in the second quarter. After this there was a steady improvement, partly due to slight modifications of the old printing presses, adopted first in Holland and copied by the English printers. In the first half of the century many English books, although poorly printed, were ornamented with attractive frontispieces, or portraits, engraved on copper. During the same period, English prayerbooks and small Bibles and New Testaments were frequently covered with gay embroideries in coloured silks and gold or silver thread. In the second half of the century the leather bindings of Samuel Mearne, to some extent imitated from those of the great French binder Le Gascon, were the daintiest England had yet produced. For trade bindings rough calf and sheepskin were most used, and the practice of lettering books on the back, instead of on the sides or fore-edges or not at all, came gradually into favour. Owing to the increase of money, and in some cases to the action of monopolists, in others to the increased payments made to authors, book-prices rather rose than fell. Thus church Bibles, which had been sold at Ios. in 1541, rose successively to 25s., 30s. and (in 1641) to 40s. Single plays in quarto cost 6d. each in Shakespeare's time, is. after the Restoration. The Shakespeare folio of 1623 is said to have been published at £1. Bishop Walton's polyglot Bible in six large volumes was sold for Do to subscribers, but resulted in a heavy loss. Izaak Walton's Compleat Angler was priced at is. 6d. in sheepskin, Paradise Lost at 3s., The Pilgrim's Progress at is. 6d.; Dryden's Virgil was published by subscription at L5:5s. It was a handsome book, ornamented with plates; but in the case of this and other subscription books a desire to honour or befriend the author was mainly responsible for the high price.

18th Century. - During this century there was a notable improvement alike in paper, type and presswork in both France and England, and towards the end of the century in Germany and Italy also. Books became generally neat and sometimes elegant. Book-illustration revived with the French livres-dvignettes, and English books were illustrated by Gravelot and other French artists. In the last quarter of the century the work of Bewick heralded a great revival in woodcut illustrations, or as the use of the graver now entitled them to be called, wood engravings. The best 18th-century binders, until the advent of Roger Payne, were inferior to those of the 17th century, but the technique of the average work was better. In trade bindings the use of sheepskin and calf became much less common, and books were mostly cased in paper boards. The practice of publishing poetry by subscription at a very high price, which Dryden had found lucrative, was followed by Prior and Pope. Single poems by Pope, however, were sold at is. and is. 6d. Novels were mostly in several volumes. The price at the beginning of the century was mostly is. 6d. each. It then remained fairly steady for many years, and at the close of the century rose again. Thus Miss Burney's Evelina (3 vols., 1778) sold for 7s. 6d., her Cecilia (5 vols., 1782) for 1 2S. 6d., and her Camilla (5 vols., 1796) for L1:1s. Johnson's Dictionary (2 vols. folio, 1755) cost L4:4s. in sheets, £4:15s. in boards.

lgth Century

A great change in the appearance of books was caused by the use first of glazed calico (about 1820), afterwards (about 1830) of cloth for the cases of books as issued by their publishers. At first the lettering was printed on paper labels, but soon it was stamped in gilt on the cloth, and in the last quarter of the century many very beautiful covers were designed for English and American books. The designs for leather bindings were for many years chiefly imitated from older work, but towards the end of the 'eighties much greater originality began to be shown. Book illustrations passed through many phases. As subsidiary methods colour-prints, line engravings, lithographs and etchings were all used during the first half of the century, but the main reliance was on wood-engraving, in which extraordinary technical skill was developed. In the 'sixties and the years which immediately preceded and followed them many of the chief English artists supplied the engravers with drawings. In the last decade of the century wood-engraving was practically killed by the perfection attained by photographic methods of reproduction (see PROCESS), the most popular of these methods entailing the use of paper heavily coated with china clay. During the century trade-printing, both in England and America, steadily improved, and the work done by William Morris at his Kelmscott Press (1891-1896), and by other amateur printers who imitated him, set a new standard of beauty of type and ornament, and of richness of general effect. On the other hand the demand for cheap reprints of famous works induced by the immense extension of the reading public was supplied by scores of pretty if flimsy editions at is. 6d. and is. and even less. The problem of how to produce books at moderate prices on good paper and well sewn, was left for the 10th century to settle. About 1894 the number of such medium-priced books was greatly increased in England by the substitution of single-volume novels at 6s. each (subject to discount) for the three-volume editions at 31s. 6d. The preposterous price of Ios. 6d. a volume had been adopted during the first popularity of the Waverly Novels, and despite the example of France, where the standard price was 3 fr. 50, had continued in force for the greater part of the century. Even after novels were sold at reasonable rates artificial prices were maintained for books of travel and biographies, so that the circulating libraries were practically the only customers for the first editions. (See PUBLISHING and BOOKSELLING). (A. W. Po.)


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Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki


This word has a comprehensive meaning in Scripture. In the Old Testament it is the rendering of the Hebrew word sepher, which properly means a "writing," and then a "volume" (Ex 17:14; Deut 28:58; 29:20; Job 19:23) or "roll of a book" (Jer 36:2, 4).

Books were originally written on skins, on linen or cotton cloth, and on Egyptian papyrus, whence our word "paper." The leaves of the book were generally written in columns, designated by a Hebrew word properly meaning "doors" and "valves" (Jer 36:23, R.V., marg. "columns").

Among the Hebrews books were generally rolled up like our maps, or if very long they were rolled from both ends, forming two rolls (Lk 4:17-20). Thus they were arranged when the writing was on flexible materials; but if the writing was on tablets of wood or brass or lead, then the several tablets were bound together by rings through which a rod was passed.

A sealed book is one whose contents are secret (Isa 29:11; Rev 5:1-3). To "eat" a book (Jer 15:16; Ezek 2:8-10; 3:1-3; Rev 10:9) is to study its contents carefully.

The book of judgment (Dan 7:10) refers to the method of human courts of justice as illustrating the proceedings which will take place at the day of God's final judgment.

The book of the wars of the Lord (Num 21:14), the book of Jasher (Josh 10:13), and the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah and Israel (2Chr 25:26), were probably ancient documents known to the Hebrews, but not forming a part of the canon.

The book of life (Ps 6928) suggests the idea that as the redeemed form a community or citizenship (Phil 3:20; 4:3), a catalogue of the citizens' names is preserved (Lk 10:20; Rev 20:15). Their names are registered in heaven (Lk 10:20; Rev 3:5).

The book of the covenant (Ex 24:7), containing Ex 20:22-23:33, is the first book actually mentioned as a part of the written word. It contains a series of laws, civil, social, and religious, given to Moses at Sinai immediately after the delivery of the decalogue. These were written in this "book."

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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Simple English

A book is a set of printed sheets of paper held together between two covers. The sheets of paper are usually covered with a text: language and illustrations: that is the main point of a printed book.

A book can also be a text in a larger collection of texts. This text has some features that do not apply to the collection as a whole. That way a book is perhaps written by one author, or it only treats one subject area. Books in this sense can often be understood without knowing the whole collection. Examples are the Bible, the Illiad or the Odyssey - All of them consist of a number of books in this sense of the word.

Hardcover books have hard covers made of cardboard covered in cloth or leather and are usually sewn together. Paperback books have covers of stiff paper and are usually glued together. The words in books may be read aloud or recorded on tapes (audiobooks) and compact discs.

Books can be borrowed from a library or bought from a bookstore. People can make their own books and fill them with family photos, drawings, or their own writing. Some books are empty inside, like a diary, address book, or photo album. Most of the time, the word "book" means that the pages inside have words printed or written on them.

Some books are written just for children, or for entertainment, while other books are for studying something in school such as math or history. Many books have photographs or drawings.

People who cannot read books, or any type of writing are called illiterate (= 'unlettered').

Contents

Types of books

There are two main kinds of book text: fiction and non-fiction.

Fiction

These books are novels, about stories that did not happen, and have been imagined by the author. Some books are based on real events from history, but the author has created imaginary characters or dialogue for the events.

Non-fiction

Books of non-fiction are about true facts or things that have really happened. Some examples are dictionaries, cookbooks, textbooks for learning in school, or a biography (someone's life story).

Historical

File:Torah and
A Torah is a kind of scroll still used today.

Between the written manuscript and the book lie several inventions. A book is an industrial product, but manuscripts are hand-made.

Manuscripts

A common type of manuscript was the scroll, which was a long sheet rolled up. The sheet could have been made of papyrus (made by the Egyptians, by weaving the inner stems of the papyrus plant and then hammering them together), or parchment or vellum (very thin animal skin, first used by the ancient Greeks), or paper (made from plant fibers, invented by the Chinese). Turning the manuscript into a book required several developments.

The codex

The Romans were the first people to put separate pieces of manuscript between covers, to form a codex. This was more convenient to handle and store than scrolls, but was not yet a book as we understand it.

Printing

Scrolls and codices were written and copied by hand. The Chinese invented woodblock printing, where shapes are carved out of a block of wood, then ink is applied to the carved side, and the block is pressed onto the paper. This way of making books was very slow, and so very few people had these kinds of books.

Johannes Gutenberg was the first to invent a machine for printing, the printing press, in the 15th century. This involved more than just a press, it involved the production of movable metal type suitable for the machine process.

Initially, the machines were slow, and needed a printer to work with them. Fast and automatic machines did not arrive until the 19th century.[1][2]

Paper and ink

Paper had been invented in the 8th century, but hand-made paper was expensive and in short supply. In the 19th century, automated or semi-automated making of paper from wood pulp was invented. Also, there was the invention of inks for various purposes, and machines driven by electricity.

The common cheap supply of paper fed the faster prining machines, and books became cheaper. Only then could ordinary people afford to buy books. Along with these inventions in the 19th century came the idea of public libraries, so poorer people could get access to the best books. Also, widespread free (or nearly free) education swelled the number of literate people.

Binding

Printing was done on large sheets of paper, which were then folded, guillotined (cut) and sewn in sections, and finally placed into the covers. All these processes became done by machines during the 19th century.

Today

Today some of the technologies have been changed, especially those involving illustration and typography. However, books look much the same as they did, with more illustration in colour, but basically the same. That is because experience has shown that readers need certain things for pleasurable reading. Graphic design and typography are the practical arts used to make books attractive and useful to readers.

Simple English Wiktionary has the word meaning for:

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References

  1. Lefebre L & Martin H-J. 1990. The coming of the book. new ed, London.
  2. Chappell W. & Bringhurst R. A short history of the printed word. Hartley & Marks, Vancouver.









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