previous next


The common paper paste is made of the finest flour of wheat mixed with boiling water, and some small drops of vinegar sprinkled in it: for the ordinary workman's paste, or gum, if employed for this purpose, will render the paper brittle. Those, however, who take the greatest pains, boil the crumb of leavened bread, and then strain off the water: by the adoption of this method the paper has the fewest seams caused by the paste that lies between, and is softer than the nap of linen even. All kinds of paste that are used for this purpose, ought not to be older or newer than one day. The paper is then thinned out with a mallet, after which a new layer of paste is placed upon it; then the creases which have formed are again pressed out, and it then undergoes the same process with the mallet as before. It is thus that we have memorials preserved in the ancient handwriting of Tiberius and Caius Gracchus, which I have seen in the possession of Pomponius Secundus,1 the poet, a very illustrious citizen, almost two hundred years since those characters were penned. As for the handwriting of Cicero, Augustus, and Virgil, we frequently see them at the present day.

1 See B. vii. c. 18, and B. xiv. c. 6. Also the Life of Pliny, in the Introduction to Vol. i. p. vii.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Latin (Karl Friedrich Theodor Mayhoff, 1906)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

hide References (2 total)
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (2):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: