Ancient ‘Flip-Flop’ Books: Publications That Can Be Read From Different Angles

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An ancient book "dozado."

In those days, when a whole library could not fit inside a tiny gadget, people took small books with them on the road. They easily fit into a bag on the belt or in the folds of the dress. And for greater convenience, the master made books “dozado”, in one binding, two works were combined, which could be read immediately from two sides.

Miniature book “dozado” of the XVI-XVII centuries.

Books “dozado” (Fr. “dos-à-dos” – “back to back”) became popular in the XVI-XVII centuries. As a rule, these were works of religious content. It was much more convenient to have the New Testament and the Old Testament with you.

A unique old book that can be read from two sides.
A book of six parts.

“Dozado” is already a phenomenon unique in its time, but some masters went even further and created more complex variations of publications. For example, in Germany in the 16th century a book was prepared that can be read from six different sides! The publication made several clamps, which allow you to disclose exactly the part that is needed. Inside there are texts of religious content, including the “Little Catechism” of the authorship of Martin Luther. Today this unique specimen is kept in the National Library of Sweden.

The book is a turncoat of the XVI century.

From the medieval libraries in Europe, the shelves were equipped with special metal rings. To them on the chains riveted books because of the high cost of the volumes.

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