Libretto of opera

A reconstruction model of a binding of libretto of opera of 18th century Barcelona. Traditional octavo format was cut from laid Guarro paper, the brand often found in these kind of librettos. The sections were bound on two cords of rough material. All adhesive used in binding was made of starch paste.

The important part of the model is reconstruction of decorative paper technique. It is a type of pulled and combed paste paper. The pattern of four colors is one of the most popular of that time.

Compare the reconstruction with a last picture of a sample of the collection of librettos of the opera of Biblioteca Reserva of University of Barcelona (source of a picture). Do not be mislead by the difference of the colors in the original and the reconstruction! We often forget that very likely in the moment of fabrication of the book the colors were much brighter that we see now and only as time passes it becomes more discolored and yellowish.