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Subject: Ink damaged parchment

Ink damaged parchment

From: Jack C. Thompson <tcl>
Date: Wednesday, April 8, 1998
Rebecca A. Rushfield <wittert [at] juno__com> writes

>    Benjamin Cohen, a scribe, asks for advice on how to neutralize
>    the damage to parchment produced when ferric sulfate-based ink
>    ages and releases sulfuric acid. He is looking for treatments
>    which do not involve the application of chemicals directly to
>    the recto surface.

I sent a longer answer directly to Benjamin Cohen, but the most
important part is below.

The question does not indicate whether or not you are looking to
retard or stop deterioration in an existing piece, or looking for a
balanced ink to use in your own work.

In general, if the ink is properly prepared it should not be
excessively acid.  One problem which I have discovered in my
research is that a person making ink may use desiccated ferrous
sulfate while using a recipe which assumed that crystalline ferrous
sulfate was being used.  If this was done, the ink would contain
approx. 35% too much ferrous sulfate.


Jack C. Thompson
Thompson Conservation Lab
7549 N. Fenwick
Portland, Oregon  97217
503-735-3942  (voice/fax)

                  Conservation DistList Instance 11:82
                  Distributed: Thursday, April 9, 1998
                       Message Id: cdl-11-82-002
Received on Wednesday, 8 April, 1998

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