Front Quad of Lincoln College, the walls covered in bright green ivy

John of Abbatis-villa – Sermones Dominicales per anni circulum. England, 13th century. Donated by Robert Fleming.

Before treatment


  • Selective cleaning of text-block, with latex sponge where dirt was present.
  • Spine covering lifted mechanically by spatula, where possible.
  • Proteinaceous/animal glue on the spinefolds was poulticed with wheat starch paste and scraped off with spatula.
  • Spine panels 2 to 6 were lined with Kozo Japanese tissue then with Arville aerocotton; both paper and textile linings had extensions which were pasted onto the outer faces of the boards. A layer of acrylic-toned thicker Kozo tissue was pasted to the spine to provide a background tone for the spine-covering reintegration.
  • Using Barbour’s grey 5-cord linen Blake thread, hitches were passed around the paired sewing supports (supports 2-6 on both sides; and on left side only for support 1 and right side only for support 6), the two free ends brought alongside the supports and tied at the joint, the knot partially seated under the supports, then the ends frayed out and pasted on the outer board faces. The hitches were covered with Japanese tissue as a release layer, to consolidate and keep them in place, and to aid readhesion of the covering material.
  • Glue residue was removed mechanically from the inner face of the spine covering material by spatula and small scalpel. Japanese Kozo tissue toned with acrylic colour was pasted only in areas of loss and the original spine covering was repasted in place.

Where next?

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