An Early 17th Century Bible

This book from 1616 is the first folio (smaller) edition of the King James Bible, and it's had a rough last couple of centuries. It's one of my upcoming treatments once funding is secured: clean it, everywhere; solve the problem of the unstable left board, badly eaten by furniture beetle; flatten and repair the leaves that give a new meaning to "false folds;" stabilize what's left of the metal furniture, and make a safe box to store it in. 

Tools of the Trade, Part II: Weights

Starting the new year out right with some new tools: these are blocks of Monotype type metal, left over from my letterpress days. They're just the right size and weight for paper repairs, with a few modifications: a coating of Paraloid B-72 in acetone to prevent the soft lead rubbing off on hands or objects, and a thick felt pad on the bottom to cushion the object and absorb moisture. (The felt is also recycled, an old etching cushion from my printmaking days that I knew would come in handy... seven years later.) When I worked at Columbia we all had really nice sets of thick glass rectangles, slightly bigger than this, with rounded edges and corresponding felts—but apparently the glass guy vastly underestimated what a pain it would be to round all those edges, and said he would never make them again. 

These join my small collection of type weights, which are little boxes filled with damaged lead type that can't be used anymore for printing. The white one was the first one I made, and has a thin foam base (stupid, once I thought of using felt, but I've never gotten around to changing it), and the grey ones have thin felt (old sizing catchers!). For these thin was okay, because the box is flat, but it needed to be thicker for the Monotype weights, which are pretty uneven on the bottom.

There are some much bigger versions of these, made with old sash weights in them, but they're in use now so I can't move them to get a photo. Same idea, but bigger, and in purple buckram! Finally some thick Perspex strips, useful for light weight. These are about a foot long; smaller is useful as well.

Collapsible Integral Cradle

A discussion of collapsible cradles recently reminded me of this, which I made years and years ago. A simple adaption of the folding boxboard cradles that were our standard for exhibition, this one is pieces of binder's board with the right amount of space in the joints to fold, and a strip of linen tape around the spine area to hold it in shape (for a stab-sewn book). The drop-spine box was measured for the cradle collapsed around the book, so they're stored together, and the cradle stands in the box for safe viewing of the book. 

Sorry for the image quality; they're really old!

La Gerusalemme Liberata di Torquato Tasso

A little volume from 1822 that we picked up for £1.50 in Lyme Regis last weekend. It was sewn on two small sawn-in cords, laced into boards lined with printer's waste: what caught my eye was the advertisement for the Encyclopedia Britannica on the back board, published between 1820 and 1823. Trying now to work out a good way to replace the missing front board and stabilize the back board attachment without obscuring the now visible printed matter.