Where the size of paperback books originated


I’ve always liked paperback books.  Not just because they were very budget friendly, but also because they were small and portable.  I could take one out to lunch with me and tuck it back into a bag—and didn’t weigh down the bag too much.  And when I was in the Army, they tucked right into my cargo pocket.

Try that with a hard back …

Plus, paperback doesn’t take up much space on the bookshelf.  Very important when you have a lot of books and have to keep beating them back.

The ereader is also designed in a paperback size.

But where did this size comes from?

Turns out, the size is because books were made from parchment, which was sheepskin. 

Sheep on a green field© Rud | Dreamstime Stock Photos

The Hidden Link Between e-Readers and Sheep features some interesting history on the origins of books, and some pretty cool pictures.

Then there’s this interesting note:

There’s a reason medieval monks wrote manuscripts; preparing the parchment was penance.

Oh, dear.

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