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considered. Alcuin, native of England, one of the most
industrious and ingenious monks of his time, occupied himself from about 778 to 800, 22 years, in making a copy of the Bible for the Emperor Charlemagne. This ancient and extremely interesting monument of piety and labor is now in the British Museum, which became possessed of it for the sum of £750. The Museum is also enriched with a variety of missals and other works, executed by the monks. In the present day, it is scarcely possible to form a correct idea of the value put upon books, even of a common order, or of the prodigious care which was taken of them, during the middle ages. To preserve them from embezzlement, they were in some cases chained to shelves and readingdesks; and in the dwellings of nobles, a volume might be seen chained to a table in the hall, for the use of such members of the family as were able to read.
The establishment of universities in the 12th c. greatly stimulated the manufacture of books by transcription, more particularly those classics and philosophical treatises that were required by students in the colleges. The anxiety of the authorities in these schools of learning to insure accuracy in the text-books, as well as to prevent the use of books of an improper kind, led to the establishment of censorships and privileges which interfered with the preparation of, and traffic in, books, long after the invention of printing. Unfortunately, while this art was superseding the ancient process of transcription, the convulsions consequent on the Reformation caused an enormous destruction of books. In England, the libraries of monasteries, representing the labor of a thousand years, were mercilessly destroyed on the spot, or carried off and consumed in base uses, without a thought as to their value. In Scotland, the monastic libraries which had escaped the ravages of Danish and other invaders, were similarly destroyed. The same fate overtook the ancient monastic libraries of France at the Revolution. See LIBRARIES.
In consequence of these deplorable events, as well as the perishableness of books, copies of works prior to the invention of printing exist only as rare and valuable curiosities. Even of the early printed books, there are comparatively few copies extant. In England, books of improved typography and binding, adapted for ordinary libraries. date no further back than the reign of Queen Anne. In proportion as literature has been popularized, books have diminished in bulk and costliness. In the 16th and 17th c., the ordinary sizes of books were folio and quarto; and as works of these huge dimensions embraced light as well as much pon
derous literature, a popular poet uses no metaphor, when he observes that ladies' read the books they could not lift.' The dignified quarto survived in imaginative literature even till our own times; for it was in this costly form that the early editions of the poetry of Scott, Byron, and others made their appearance. Excepting for special purposes, all such large sizes are happily superseded by octavos and still smaller books. Forms and prices are no longer for the few, but for the million.' And copies of the Bible, instead of being chained to shelves and desks, and being valued at hundreds of pounds, are now scattered in myriads at the easy charge of a quarter of a dollar, or without charge to any who are moneyless.
The dimensions of printed books are regulated by the size and form of the sheets of paper of which they are composed. A sheet, being folded in the middle, forms two leaves, or four pages; and a book of this size is called a folio. When the sheet is again folded, so as to make four leaves, or eight pages, it forms a quarto. The quarto, being folded across, so as to make eight leaves, or sixteen pages, forms an octavo. By folding the sheet into twelve leaves, or twenty-four pages, is made a duodecimo; and if into eighteen leaves, or thirty-six pages, an octodecimo. Below this there are small books of different denominations, sometimes spoken of as pocket editions. Booksellers are accustomed, in speech, to anglicise the terms for the sizes of books, with little regard to the proper terminations-as 4to, 8vo, 12mo, 18mo, 24mo, 32mo, 48mo, etc. For a long period, printing-paper was made chiefly of three sizes, respectively called royal, demy, and crown; and according as any one of these was employed, the size of the book was large or small. Demy, however, was the most commonly used, and the demy 8vo may be said to have become the established form of standard editions of books. As by means of the paper-making machine, paper is made in webs, and can be cut into every imaginable size of sheet, and as printing-machines can print very large surfaces, the sizes of books are now comparatively arbitrary; though, for convenience, the old names remain, with the difference, that instead of the 12mo, a not very dissimilar size, called the post-8vo, has come extensively into use.
A thin kind of book, consisting of a few sheets sewed or stitched together, without boards, is called a pamphlet-a term supposed to be derived from the French words par filet, by a thread.' The French term brochure (from brocher, to stitch), signifying pamphlet, is coming into use; as also the French word livraison, signifying a portion of a book (group of volumes) published separately. For an account of the modern traffic in books, see Book
BOOKBINDING: art of fastening together and covering the sheets of paper composing a book. The early form of books being either rolls of papyrus or wax-covered tablets, the art of B. in its present form appeared first with the introduction of leaves of parchment or papyrus instead of rolls. This improvement in form is attributed by Dibdin, though on somewhat doubtful authority, to Attalus II., King of Pergamos, about B.C. 150, and though used to a considerable extent by the Greeks, was a novelty to Martial in Rome as late as A.D. 100. From this time to the invention of printing, B. was done almost exclusively by the monks; and great labor was bestowed on the covering of their most precious manuscripts. One of the oldest specimens existing is the St. Cuthbert Gospels in the British museum, bound about A.D. 700. It is covered with velvet heavily ornamented with silver inlaid with gems. A fine example of the early monastic style is shown on Plate XII., the covers being of hard wood with a figure of Christ carved on an ivory plaque in the centre, surrounded by gold filagree work, containing 16 jewels. All monastic binding has the same characteristics of heavy boards with strong metal clasps and bands, though the materials varied from the plainest parchment and iron to ivory, enamels, and mosaics with jewelled silver and gold. The invention of printing and the dawn of the Renaissance wrought a revolution in B. The contrast between the clumsy, inartistic productions of the monasteries and the masterpieces of taste and beauty from the library of Jean Grolier (q.v.) is sharp and striking, and no productions of later times have surpassed in artistic beauty the work of these nameless Italian and French binders employed by Grolier, Maioli, and others. It is in the reign of Henry III. of France (1574-89) that the name of the binder first appears, Nicholas and Clovis Eve being the first of whom we find mention. An example of the work of one of the most famous French binders of the 17th c., Nicolas Padeloup, is shown on Plate 13. The most important event in the art of B. since the invention of printing was the introduction of cloth for covering, 1820-30, by John Pickering, a London publisher, and Albert Leighton, a bookbinder. The use of cloth aided greatly in the multiplication of cheap books, not only on account of the cheapness of the materials, but also because the process of binding allowed a much greater use of machinery than in the case of books bound in morocco. The machinery used in B. is nearly all of American invention, and has greatly reduced the cost as well as increased the rapidity of production.
Bookbinding may be divided into two classes, 'Extra work,' i.e., books bound with extra care, and by hand methods which are still very similar to those employed 300 years ago, and Edition work,' done principally by machinery in large quantity.
EXTRA WORK.-The book comes from the printer in flat sheets of 8, 16, 24, or 32 pages each, which are folded by girls with an ivory folder, so that the pages come in consecutive order. Although great care must be taken,
an expert folder will fold on an average 400 sixteen-page sheets per hour. Piles of the folded sheets, now called signatures, are next laid in regular order on a long table, and a girl picks up one of each signature as she passes along, making a complete book when she reaches the end, the process being called gathering. The book is then collated, that is, examined to see that no signature has been omitted or duplicated; this is done very rapidly by bending the book so that the signature number, which is on the lower left-hand corner, can be seen. In order to make the book solid, it is next beaten with a heavy, broad-faced hammer, or subjected to pressure in a press.
Sewing is done on a frame called a sewing-bench, on which bands or cords are stretched in a vertical position, and to these the signatures are attached by passing the needle and thread through the middle of the signature and around each band or cord, the number and location of these cords being shown on a bound book by the raised bands on the back. In most work at the present time grooves are sawed in the backs of the books, into which the cords fit, and the raised bands usually seen on the backs of fine books are put on by strips of pasteboard before the leather is drawn on.
After the colored lining papers have been pasted on, the back is covered with glue, and before the glue has thoroughly hardened the back is rounded by beating it in a peculiar way with a hammer. The book is then placed between backing boards, and the edges of the back beaten in such a way as to form the two projections against which the covers rest. The edges of the book are next trimmied by a knife called a plow, while the book is held firmly in a press. Before cutting the front edge, the back is struck forcibly against the table so as to render it flat, and the volume, firmly held, is placed in the press and clamped.