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Re: [BKARTS] historical accuracy

At 11:00 AM 10/9/2003 -0500, Duncan wrote:

I have a friend who is working on a low/no budget film.  The setting is
the 1920's and the question is this, would someone in that period
ever purchase a new book that had not been trimmed?  If they did purchase
a new book and it was untrimmed, would that be more common
for the 1920's or less common?

In the 1920s, it would have been highly unusual for a person purchasing an American or British book (and probably the books of many other countries) to have thus obtained one untrimmed (at least at the top edge; foreedges and/or bottom edges were more often -- though not "commonly" -- left untrimmed). On the other hand, it would have been common were the person purchasing a French book in France (or other countries).

I told him that publishers used to print signatures that individuals used
to take to their preferred binder, but I would assume that the
binder would trim the text block.

This is true before books were routinely issued in "publishers' bindings," something which begins in England and in the United States at the end of the 18th century and is well nigh universal by, say, the 1830s. In France, it is still the case that some books are issued untrimmed in paper wrappers and may then be taken by the buyer to a binder.

................... Sid Huttner

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