Seals - Protection and Identification of Ancient Books

Since ancient times, the life of human society is associated with books. They are created, transmitted to descendants, was lost, destroyed in fires, kept, collected. From books, especially those belonging to state institutions, it is possible to trace historical conflicts and experiences of state transformations. With the change of epochs changed the names of organizations, changed, respectively, and book stamps.

old book

The mystery of the 17th page of the library book excited the minds of schoolchildren and older people. It turns out that the thing is that each library is required to keep a strict account of its own book Fund. The place of putting down the inventory number and stamp impression is connected with the technology of book publishing. After all, in those days it was not possible to create a stamp onlineand use more secure printing. As a rule, in printing houses publishing products are printed on large, so-called author's sheets, which are then folded several times to the desired format. The author's sheet measures the amount of paper consumed for publication. Now, a standard-sized book has four additions. In other words, one printed author's sheet is equal to 16 book pages. The first sixteen-page notebook was considered not particularly reliable and could eventually be lost. Therefore, it was decided to stamp from the second notebook, that is, from the 17th page. State libraries of all-Russian significance stamp their publications additionally and on the 33rd page. Thanks to these accounting requirements, if the first block and the cover sheet were lost, it was easy to identify the library copy.

Interestingly, currently unremarkable distinctive "stamp" becomes the subject of close criminal attention. The reason is the fact that in the market of second-hand literature, which has antique value, publications with library stamps are not in demand. Therefore, many businessmen manage to get rid of the print in various ways. Well-known Russian bibliophile and book critic Mikhail Seslavinsky made a classification of such methods:

  • chemical removal;
  • artisanal removal by mechanical erasing of paint;
  • professional restoration work to eliminate traces of stamping.

In the last five to six years, there has been a more radical trend to eliminate the signs of library stamping. Especially sophisticated "experts" cut out a part of a sheet with traces of the press then make a full dubbing, or carry out the skillful accumulation of the lost fragment.

Another problem haunts serious collectors of expensive rarities. This monetization of old books by pasting an old bookplate. At the same time, according to the scan of the original sample, a steel mold is made, and already from it is stamped with a printing ink of a special composition. This method is technically difficult to perform and requires high skill. But the effort is worth it. For so aged book at a specialized auction, you can get a large monetary reward. Ex-libris of large Orthodox monasteries and the family library of the Imperial house are very popular among dishonest booksellers. An inexperienced collector of books is impossible to distinguish the original from the fake.

Within the scope of this article, it is difficult to cover fully the content of library seals, which can be considered as a cultural heritage. This is of interest to researchers in the field of book science. If in those days people had a resource for printing online designers for free, it would be different.

Date of publication 2019-09-01