Grammatia, Hebraea Eliae Levitae, shelf mark HI a12 (1552) was in very poor condition on receipt. A large percentage of the leather was damaged or missing with the majority of the turn-in leather severely damaged. While the textblock was in fairly good condition the parchment guards, endpapers, title page and last few pages were worn and damaged. These pages were repaired and the parchment guards removed. They were then humidified, photographed, repaired and resewn into place with a new handmade endpaper attached. The existing endband was also tacked down using a back bead sewing.
Once the textblock was stable a new point of attachment from board to textblock was needed. To do this I used sewing thread sewn around the original cords and slowly built up enough thread to create a cord. These new cords were then laced through the original lacing holes. Next a Japanese paper lining was pasted in place with a flange extending onto the outside of the boards.
Finally a toned archival calf leather reback was applied using Canadian wheat starch paste. Repairs to the missing portions of the cover leather were made using the German style. This involved pasting the repair leather to the reverse of the original and paring it from the back until it was the same thickness as the original. This method helped to maintain a smooth transition from original to new leather. Once the repairs were to the correct thickness the original leather was pasted to the cover boards and spine.
Head after conservation
Inside of front cover before conservation
Inside of front cover after conservation
Inside of back cover before conservation
Inside of back board after conservation