Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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arabesque

A relatively old form of book decoration, revived by French gilders and reintroduced into England in about 1829. It consists of interlaced lines and convoluted curves arranged in a more or less geometrical pattern. The name derives from the fact that it was brought to its highest perfection by Near Eastern artists. The term is also used to describe a style of ornamentation in relief, consisting of fanciful human or animal figures combined with floral forms. Arabesque is also sometimes inappropriately applied to the embossed designs on book covers. (181 , 241 , 342 )




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