Photo Documentation

Front cover: before treatment

Back cover: before treatment

Front Endleaves: before treatment

Split Section: before treatment

Board corner: before treatment

Front cover: after treatment

Back cover: after treatment

Front Endleaves: after treatment

Split Section: after treatment

Board corner: after treatment

Treatment Record Documentation

Conservator: Xiaoping Cai

Date of Issue: 01/05/2015

Date of Completion: 30/05/2015

Title: Letter to the marquess of Lansdowne, K.G., lord president of the council: On the late revolution in France

Author: Hord Brougham

Publisher: London: James Ridgway, Piccadilly

Published Date: 1884

Owner: Westfield College Library

Shelf Mark: JC 223. B85

Dimensions(binding): 232 X 150 X 15 mm

Dimensions(textblock): 220 X 142 X 10 mm




This is a full style binding with tight back, smooth spine and grooved joint. It is fully covered in green cloth and the cover boards are straw board. The spine is lined up with layers of stiff paper. The cap is pulled over the top of the bookblock. No decoration present on either the covers or the spine. No endbands are visible. A paper strip with hand-written title is placed on the spine. The boards were originally attached to the textblock with three sewing-support slips laced through the boards.


The slightly rounded textblock has a shallow shoulder. Layers of continuous paper lining material are used on the spine of the textblock. The textblock is comprised of quartette bifolio sections of cream coloured, machine made paper. It is sewn on three recessed cord supports, with two kettle stitches. The edges of the textblock are untrimmed. The tipped-on, single bifolio endleaves of machine made paper are similar to the text. But the edges are trimmed, the inner sides of the endleaves are coloured with light green, and the paper surfaces are polished. The outmost endleaves are fully pasted down onto the inner side of the boards. There is a bookplate on the left pastedown identifying the ownership of the Westfield College. There is also a label on the left fly leaf describing the donors of the volume to the Westfield College.


There is black printer’s ink through the text. Two black stamps are found on the title page. Annotations written in graphite are found on the left pastedown and title page.




The spine of the cover has been repaired at least twice, by cloth and pressure sensitive tape. Three pieces of repair cloth of light green colour are adhered directly to the spine of the bookblock. Two small strips of cloth are placed across the head and tail, extending beyond the joint on both sides. Another continuous strip of repair cloth is placed on top of joint area of the right cover. On the left cover, a continuous strip of pressure-sensitive tape is also placed on top of the joint area. The left endleaves have been guarded together by using a strip of white gum tape. 



The binding is in poor condition overall with tenuously attached boards and with losses of covering material at the spine and corners. The left joint is broken and the board is detached from the textblock. There is still a partial part of the repair tape left. The rest of it is peeled off, living a very degraded strip of adhesive residue. There is also a circle of adhesive residue on the top right corner of the left cover. The right board is attached solely by the single layer of the repair cloth, which adhered with degraded adhesive. And also, the repair cloth is brittle and aesthetically displeasing as it is not painted to match the cloth covering. The original spine of the cover is very fragile and brittle, and the head and tail of it are lost. Corners of the boards are rounded and the covering cloth has discolouration around edges. All the sewing supports are broken at the joints.


The textblock is in fair condition overall with a few detached leaves and an inappropriate repair inside the left endleaves. The repair gum tape has lost its adhesion and almost comes off. The title page stuck to the fly leaf and thus detaches from the main part of the textblock. The right endleaves are separated on the fold. The sewing structure of the textblock are almost intact, but the sewing supports are very brittle. There are small tears on page 1 and page 153.



(1) Surface cleaned by using a soft brush and chemical sponge.

(2) Lifted the old repair cloth on boards and the tape carrier on boards, and also the gum tape at

     the joint of the left endleaves. Removed the adhesive residue on the cloth covering by using 3%

     Methylcellulose(MC) as poultice.

(3) Separated the boards and the textblock. Removed the loose lining material mechanically. Then

     applied 10% wheat starch paste as poultice onto the spine, leaved it for few minutes and then

     scraped off the paste and all the lining residues.

(4) Cut the sewing thread carefully, and then separated each section. Removed the bits of adhesive


(5) Knocked out the old groove of each section and left them in press for overnight.

(6) For the title page that stuck together with the fly leaf, local humidification was carried out along

      the spine edge. Then separated these two leaves. 

(7) For bifolios which separated into two single leaves, a guard of thin Japanese tissue was applied

      on both sides. Besides, both the outer and inner side of each section were reinforced with a

      guard of Japanese tissue.

(8) Resewn the textblock on thin cords through the original sewing holes. Then slightly rounded

      the spine with a bone folder.

(9) A Japanese paper strip was folded in half lengthwise with one half being adhered to the

     textblock and the other flap upwards. The original separated endleaf was tipped on. Same

     treatment was carried out for the right (back) endleaf.

(10) Applied a strip of Japanese kozo paper on top of the spine of the textblock, and pasted it

       down. Then made a hollow spine with craft paper, pasted it on top of the Japanese paper


(11) Lifted up the cloth away from the spine edge for about 20 mm, for both the left and right

       cover. Then lifted a flap of pastedown 20 mm wide and penetrate to a depth of 15mm

       between the board and the margin of the pastedown. Same treatment was carried out for

       another three corners which are close to the joint. 

(12) Cut a strip of linen cloth, whic the length is equal to the height of the boards plus extra turn-

        ins at head and tail, the width is equal to the length of the spine plus 30mm. Then cooked it

        for 10 minutes, in order to remove some infill. Then toned the cloth with acrylic paint.  After

        the toned cloth totally got dry, paste a strip of thin manila card on the spine area for stiffening

        the cloth spine.

(13) Aligned the boards on the textblock and the square set. Cut the sewing support shorter and

        pasted them onto both the left and right boards. After the paste got dry, applied the rebacking

        cloth to the spine, pasted it under the side flaps and  turned it  beneath the pastedowns.

        Pasted down the raised portions of pastedowns and cloth.

(14) Pasted the free flap of Japanese tissue over the board edge of the pastedown.

(15) Removed the lining material of the original spine covering and adhered it on top of the repair

        spine cloth.




Japanese paper: 11gsm Tengujo, 23gsm Kozo paper

Aeroplane linen

Archival Kraft paper

Grey manila card

Linen thread, cream

Wheat Starch Paste, unmodified, 10%(W/V)

Methylcellulose, Sigma M-0387, 3% (w/v) diluted in hot then cold water

Daler Rowney System 3 Acrylic paint