December 15, 2023 in 

A very thin, soft, and absorbent paper made of bamboo fiber, although there are imitation versions on the market.

Chinese paper or Indian proof was traditionally used for publishing books and other publications in China or India. Constructed from bamboo, hemp, and rag fibers mixed together, its surface was coated with clay in order to create an even surface suitable for printing – protecting both itself and the paper against moisture or insects.

Chinese paper or Indian proof was first utilized as printing paper in Europe during the 13th century, quickly becoming standard printing material by 15th-century paper mills in Italy and Germany. Unfortunately, its production proved expensive, while its quality varied widely from batch to batch. By the 18th century, however, another type of paper called Wove paper became prevalent – created from one sheet rolled out and flattened after being rolled out and flattened; its production cost significantly less compared with that of China proof and more uniform in quality than that of India proof or Chinese paper or India proof had ever been.

Today, most books and publications are printed on woven paper; however, Chinese paper or Indian proof remains popularly used for certain special applications, including printing money or stamps.

Books printed in England during the 18th and early 19th centuries were frequently bound in “China paper” or “India proof.” This thin translucent paper was produced by coating tissue paper sheets with starch or gum, drying it out, then size-sizing with animal glue or gelatin to produce what became known as ‘China paper” or ‘India proof.”

Bookbinders benefitted greatly from using this type of paper because it was strong and flexible enough to be sewn without tearing. It was much cheaper than more commonly used options like vellum or parchment.

Early books were often printed on both sides of paper before their pages were cut in the middle and sewn together – known as double fanfold binding.

China paper or Indian proof became less prevalent for bookbinding by the mid-19th century as machine-made papers became more widely available and cheaper.

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