A functional or ornamental band, made of coloured silk or cotton, which is fastened at the top (and sometimes at the bottom) of the spine of a book. Originally it was sewn into the boards or leaves of the book to link the sections together but in today’s binding process, it is often glued- on for decoration. The headbands of the 12th and early 13th centuries were combined with a leather tab. The conventional cloth or silk headband was introduced in the early 16th century and decorative glued- on headbands were introduced in the early 19th century. Also known as heads.

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