Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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Liquid substances which, to a greater or lesser degree, are capable of dissolving or dispersing other substances. In addition to water (the so-called universal solvent), acetone, ethyl alcohol, normal and isopropyl alcohols, ethylene glycol, naphtha, carbon tetrachloride, carbon disulfide, many esters, etc., are used as solvents. The fact that water is neither flammable nor toxic makes it a very valuable solvent; unfortunately, its adverse effect on some inks, colors, etc., makes the use of other solvents necessary at times.

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