The book has been translated into Persian by Zahra Zarghami.
This book is the result of research into the nature and characteristics of Islamic paper, gleaned through the systematic analysis of over 100 dated samples.
Descriptions of the physical characteristics of papers originating from Persia, Syria, and Egypt from the 12th to the 19th century provide a means by which papers are compared and contrasted.
To place this research into a historical context, the book begins with an overview of the development of papermaking by hand in the Islamic world and examines the impact and spread of the craft throughout Persia and the Middle East, noting its success in relation to other contemporary writing materials and its failure to compete with imported Western papers.
A history of Islamic papermaking, writing materials prior to the advent of paper, papermaking in the Islamic world, the transition from papyrus and parchment to paper, sources of early paper samples, the decline of papermaking in the Islamic world, the nature of paper and its production, and the nature, properties and characteristics of paper are among the topics discussed in the book.
Helen is a leading figure in the field of paper conservation, with busy studios in central London and Cambridgeshire.
She is an accredited member of the Institute of Conservation, with over 25 years of experience working for and helping clients in the UK, and internationally.
She is also a lecturer in Chinese and Japanese art at the University of Geneva and curator of the Baur Foundation, Museum of Far Eastern Art, Geneva. She has written extensively on Asian art and translated a number of books.
The National Library of Iran was established in 1937. The library has been merged with the Islamic Revolution Cultural Documentation Organization (IRCDO) to form the National Library and Archives of Iran.
It is home to collections of rare manuscripts and documents and reference books.