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brought most carefully to an exact level. As many of these frames as are required for each sheet are placed in the press. A leathern roller, covered with a thick gluey kind of ink, is passed over the types. A blank sheet of paper is then laid upon them, and is pressed down with great force. This is removed, the types again inked, and another sheet printed in the same manner. As many sheets are thus printed as there are to be copies of the work, and each sheet is printed on the other side upon other types exactly in the same manner. After the required number of sheets are printed off, the types are broken up, each letter being restored to its proper compartment in the compositor's box. These types can then be used again in setting up other sheets.
When a very large number of copies of any book is required, it is convenient to keep the types set up, and to print off the copies as they are wanted. This of course prevents these types being employed for another work. In order to avoid this inconvenience a method of printing from fixed types has been invented. This is called stereotyping. The word stereotype is derived from two Greek words, stereos, "fixed," and typus, " type.” The process of stereotyping is simply this. The moveable types of each page are set up ready for printing; a plaster cast of the page is then taken ; this forms a mould, from which a metal plate may be cast. The metal plate is a fac-simile* of the
* original page of types. These types may then be broken up from their form, and impressions taken from the metal plate.
* Fac-simile.] A copy made so like as to be an exact counterpart of the original.
FOLDING AND BINDING. When books were written on leaves of parchment, the leaves were simply fastened together, so as to form one long strip. Wooden rollers were fixed at the top and the bottom, and the whole was rolled up, as we now roll up a map.
Our notion of a book is a number of leaves fastened in some cover, the leaves being printed on both sides, so that in reading we turn them over page after page. This method of doing up a book was, indeed, adopted before printing, being first used for Church Service books. But we must remember that books are printed in sheets, and these sheets are much larger than any books in common use. If there are only two pages on each side of the sheet, the sheet is folded in two, and there are four pages to the sheet; this makes a very large book, which is called a folio. Very few books are now printed in
If there are four pages on each side, the sheet is folded in four, so that each sheet gives eight pages; a book so printed is called a quarto. If there are eight pages on a side, the sheet is folded in eight, and makes sixteen pages ; such a book is called an octavo. A duodecimo is made of sheets which have twelve pages on each side. The name folio is derived from a Latin word, signifying leaf, The words quarto, octavo, duodecimo, mean fourth, eighth, twelfth. There are other names given to smaller books, derived from the number of pages on one side of a sheet in the same way.
The printed sheets are brought into the folding
room in separate heaps, one heap containing copies of the first sheet, another heap copies of the second sheet, and so on; so that there are as many heaps as there are sheets in the volume to be bound up. A folder sits before each heap, and folds up the sheets one by one, so that the pages follow one another in their proper order. By practice he can do this with wonderful rapidity. The sheets having been folded are ready to be put together. One is taken from each heap, and the sheets so taken are arranged in their order, and are given to the stitcher, after having been pressed with heavy rollers. The stitching is done by women in the following way. The sheets are not actually sewn to each other, but there are a number of strings or bands which go across the back of the book, and each sheet is sewn separately to each of these bands. When one has been thus sewn, the next is laid upon it, and sewn in the same way; and so the whole book is fastened together by means of these bands, the ends of which are left hanging over on each side. A little warm melted glue is then brushed over the back. Before the glue is quite hard, the workman lays the volume down flat, and hammers it with his right hand, while with his left he draws the sheets in such a manner as to make the back of the book round. It requires a great deal of skill and practice to do this. To cut the edges, the book is now screwed very tight in a press, the top of the book projecting a little beyond the sides of the press. The edges of the top are then cut smooth by a sharp instrument, not very unlike a carpenter's plane. The edges of the bottom are cut in exactly the same way, but for the front the round back is first pressed flat again, and the edges are then cut; and when the book is taken out of the press the back flies back to its old shape, and the front edges have that hollow form which we see in bound books.
The next step is to make the book fit to receive the boards, which are to form the sides. In order that these boards may remain in their places, the book is pressed in such a manner as to make a small groove close to the edges of the back on each side. The boards, which are cut to the proper size, out of a very thick kind of pasteboard, called millboard, then lie flat on the sides, without making sharp edges at the back of the book, and cannot easily slip out of their places. These boards are fastened to the book by the ends of the bands which were left hanging over, the strings being untwisted and flattened out. The ends are passed through holes in the boards, and secured with glue on the inside. A piece of leather is then cut out, of a size something larger than the book, to form the cover; it is well covered with paste, and carefully drawn over the back and sides so as to be quite smooth ; it is then turned over the edges, and the turnings neatly concealed by a lining of paper on the inside of the boards.
The book is now bound; but the cover may be ornamented in various ways. The name of the work is usually printed in gold letters on the back, and patterns are very commonly stamped, sometimes with and sometimes without gold, both on the back and on the sides. The edges are either sprinkled or stained with various colours or gilt.
Books are not always bound in leather, but are sometimes covered with paper and cloth, the edges being left uncut. Books so done up are said to be in boards. Of late years binding in cloth has been brought to great perfection; and we continually see cloth-bound books covered with all kinds of pretty devices. The manner of binding books, in boards or in cloth, is not quite the same as that of binding them in leather, but there is not enough difference to make a particular description necessary.
THE CRICKET. LITTLE inmate, full of mirth, Chirping on my kitchen hearth, Wheresoe'er be thine abode, Always harbinger* of good, Pay me for thy warm retreat With a song more soft and sweet; In return thou shalt receive Such a strain as I can give. Thus thy praise shall be express'd, Inoffensive, welcome guest! While the rat is on the scout, And the mouse with curious snout, With what vermin else infest Every dish, and spoil the best; Frisking thus before the fire, Thou hast all thine heart's desire. Though in voice and shape they be Form'd as if akin to thee, Thou surpassest, happier far, Happiest grasshoppers that are; Theirs is but a summer's song, Thine endures the winter long, Unimpair'd, and shrill, and clear, Melody throughout the year.
* Harbinger.) Forerunner.