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See “A Word on Size-Notation” (see note 12 above), p. 36 [406]. He did allude to presswork as well as paper when he said that “the modern methods of making paper and of printing books combine to render any accurate application of form-notation to such books not so much difficult as impossible.” But his statement would not have come to so definite a conclusion if he had recognized the potential usefulness of typographical evidence in determining format (and therefore had more explicitly seen format as reflected in the forme).


Presses that were sheet-fed rather than web-fed could also make use of rolled paper, if the rolls were cut into sheets first; and the size of the sheets was of course determined in the same way as if the cutting were done after printing—by the area of printing surface placed on the press. But this situation falls into the same category as that discussed in the preceding section: whether the paper brought to the press was half a double-sized sheet or a segment of a roll does not affect the essential argument.


See, for example, Oliver L. Steele, “Half-Sheet Imposition of Eight-Leaf Quires in Formes of Thirty-Two and Sixty-Four Pages,” SB, 15 (1962), 274-278; cf. his “A Note on Half-Sheet Imposition in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Books,” Gutenberg Jahrbuch, 1962, pp. 545-547.


These patterns can still have some usefulness, as in detecting cancel leaves; but no conclusions can be drawn, even tentatively, from the direction of the chainline pattern or the location of the watermarks.


For an example of the use of this technique, see Oliver L. Steele, “On the Imposition of the First Edition of Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter,Library, 5th ser., 17 (1962), 250-255.


See Oliver L. Steele, “Evidence of Plate Damage as Applied to the First Impressions of Ellen Glasgow's The Wheel of Life,SB, 16 (1963), 223-231. In the case of text printed from offset plates, slur indicating the trailing edge can sometimes be seen with the help of magnification; see Craig Abbott, “Offset Slur as Bibliographical Evidence,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, 70 (1976), 538-541. E. W. Padwick should be given credit for recommending, in an introductory textbook (Bibliographical Method, 1969), that such techniques as studying plate damage and leaf-edges should be employed in the attempt to determine the format of machine-printed books because format “remains the only real indication of how the book was constructed” (p. 227).


As in an instance that I analyzed in the Northwestern-Newberry Edition of Herman Melville's Typee (1968), pp. 310-311.


See, for example, Shef Rogers, “How Many Ts Had Ezra Pound's Printer?”, SB, 49 (1996), 277-283.


See Matthew J. Bruccoli and C. A. Rheault, “Imposition Figures and Plate Gangs in The Rescue,SB, 14 (1961), 258-262.


See the very informative article by Thomas L. Bonn, “Two, Two-Up, 32s: A Paperback in the Making,” Journal of the Printing Historical Society, 18 (1984), 36-46; see also Matthew J. Bruccoli, American Notes & Queries, 1 (1962), 6, and G. T. Tanselle, “Imposition of Armed Services Editions: Another Example,” PBSA, 66 (1972), 434-435.