I have a great time reading about all things paper. I had a slow start as the first sentence in the first chapter tells about the city of Cambulac (Beijing). However because it was quoting the travels of Marco Polo I had to look up the city. Hopefully it will be in the kindle version. Tried Siri but it had no clue.
You will need a good historical back ground or a good dictionary. You just have to have a good background on a wide range of subjects to pick up all the nuances.
We start long before paper and go through its two thousand year history and concluding with how paper is reference in relation to 911.
The chapters overlap chronologically with a different infuses on paper use. In Chapter named "Goddess by the Stream" we get a picture of the paper balloon bombs the Japanese sent through the jet stream to the U.S. in WWII.
There is lots of general information on papermaking which brings back the papermaking classes I had in elementary school.
With the advent of electronics many of the paper functions have been usurped. I wonder if someday it may not meet the same fate as papyrus.
In any event the book is worth re-reading and keeping as a reference. Speaking of reference this book has a fantastic and extensive bibliography.
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