Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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signature

1. A section or GATHERING (2) of a book, either in the flat or folded state, to which a SIGNATURE MARK has been assigned. Technically, the sets of 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, or 128 printed pages. when folded, constitute a "section," while a "signature" is only the sequential mark of identification printed on the initial page of the section; today, however, little if any distinction is made between the two expressions. The term is not altogether synonymous with SHEET (5) , because a sheet as printed may contain more than one section (see: FOLDING ), and, in the case of a half sheet, may constitute a section of fewer pages than others in the same publication. Thus books consist of many sections but those sections may not consist of the same number of leaves. 2. The name or initials, written in a person's own hand, for the purpose of authenticating a document. (69 , 140 , 189 , 287 )




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