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columbia library artistbooks_ho chi minh7.JPG

Deckle edge of C. David Thomas's "An Artist's portrait of Ho Chi Minh," an artists' book recently added to the Columbia University Library's rare books collection. The book's pages are handmade in Vietnam of mulberry paper, which has unusually long strands of fiber. The paper's uneven edge, also known as deckle edges, are a by-product of manual paper production. When all books were made of handmade paper, the edges would be trimmed and gilded, to keep dust off the book. (Untrimmed deckle edges collect dust very badly.) (Julia Gronnevet/CNS)