Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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Armenian bole

A friable, earthy clay, usually of a red color due to the presence of iron oxide; it consists essentially of hydrous silicates of aluminum and (sometimes) magnesium. It is used as a coloring material and is also applied to the edges of books during gilding. In the latter use it serves both to provide a base for the gold leaf and to impart to it a greater depth and luster. When mixed with paste and a small amount of oil, it may be used to sprinkle the edges of books. (335 )

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