Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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The bast fiber from the inner bark of the flax plant (Linun usitatissimum), and the source of linen for thousands of years. The bast fiber is about 25 mm long and approximately 0.02 mm thick, giving it a length to diameter ratio of about 1,250:1. It is thinner than the cotton fiber and its tube has thicker walls. It is also stiffer and stronger than cotton, has a rounded section and is knotted at intervals along its length. Linen rags, cuttings, thread, etc., have long been used in the manufacture of paper. See also: BOOK CLOTH ; SEWING THREAD . (17 , 143 )

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