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This content is taken from the Keio University's online course, 古書から読み解く日本の文化: 和本の世界. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 3 seconds Here we will discuss the practice of format changing. We have seen that Japanese books come in a variety of formats. Let us start by taking a look at these. This is an accordion book, this is a scroll, and this here, as you no doubt know by now, is a multi-section (tetsuyōsō) book. However, this is not the original format these books were in when they were made; at some point, the format was changed. The number of traditional books that were reformatted at some point in their life is extremely high, therefore unless one is able to establish what format they were originally in, it is basically impossible to assess their value.

Skip to 0 minutes and 57 seconds With this in mind, let us look in more detail at the practice of reformatting. Let us start with this accordion book here. As you can see, it opens like an accordion. However, this book was originally a scroll, like this one here. The roller was removed, and the roll of paper was folded on itself and covers were applied. Right, but how can you tell? It is actually very easy to tell if you open it. If you look here about half way down the paper you can see these small horizontal crinkles. The thing is, you are not supposed to have these in a standard accordion book.

Skip to 1 minute and 49 seconds These are the kind of crinkles that you get when you roll up the paper and are known as makijiwa (roll wrinkles) in Japanese. So what happened is that, to rebind it, the roll was unfurled and then folded like this on itself but the wrinkles obviously remained. One more thing; this may not be so easy to see, but here there are marks from insect damage. These marks are another thing to look for when trying to determine if a book was reformatted or not. In accordion books, insect damage is usually found on the crease, and it spreads symmetrically on both sides, but in this case you can see that the same pattern of damage appears at regular intervals.

Skip to 2 minutes and 35 seconds This means that the insects ate the paper when the text was still in scroll format. Also, in this book everything seems to be fine at the beginning of the book, but when you get to a certain point you see that there is writing right on the creases, which you would never find in a standard accordion book. That is because when you change the format inevitably some things end up being out of place. The fact that this book was rebound as an accordion book tells us that the scroll as a format was not very practical, so that in order to make reading and storing away the text after reading it easier, scrolls were often rebound as accordion books.

Skip to 3 minutes and 21 seconds This is one such example.

改装の基礎と巻子装から折本への改装

このステップでは、改装について学びます。まず、代表的な5つの改装のうちの1つについての説明をビデオでご覧ください。

装訂の有する意味については理解いただけたと思いますが、気をつけなければいけないのは、古い和本は作られた時とは異なる装訂に改められたものが多いということです。この問題は今まであまり注意されてきませんでしたが、改装された本は非常に多く、やはりきちんと認識する必要がある問題であると言えます。

表紙を替える

和本は装訂だけでなく、表紙も非常に多様です。表紙の材質やデザインなどは、その本が製作された場や時代を知る手掛かりとなることも多く、重要な情報であると言えます。しかしながら、この表紙が付け替えられるのは日常茶飯事と言えます。表紙は汚れたり痛んだりしやすいものですので、見栄えを重視したり、価値を高めようとして、所蔵者や業者が付け替えることが多かったのです。これは現在でも行われていることであると言えます。特に多いのは、古写本に豪華な布製の表紙が付けられることでした。

*Eiga no taigai* 図1. 詠歌大概 〔室町中後期〕雲紙
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完全に装訂を替える

表紙を変えるよりも手が込んでいるのが、装訂までも変えてしまうことです。最初の姿とは全く形が変わってしまうのです。これはそういうことがあると知っていなければ見抜けないこともあります。利用しやすいように巻子装を折本にすることもありますが、その殆どは価値を高めるために行われるものです。特殊なものも少なくありませんが、注意していると見かけることがあるのは以下の5種類くらいでしょうか。改装の方法と、判別法を簡単に説明しておきます。

5つの代表的な改装の種類:

  1. 巻子装 → 折本
  2. 折本 → 巻子装
  3. 綴葉装 → 巻子装
  4. 袋綴 → 巻子装
  5. 袋綴 → 綴葉装

巻子装 → 折本

方法 :軸と表紙を取って、一定の幅で山折りと谷折りを繰り返し、最後に新たに表紙を付す。
判別法:巻皺の確認、折目に文字がかかっていないかをチェック。
効能:利用しやすくなる。

*Myōhō rengekyō* 図2. 巻子装から折本の例 妙法蓮華経
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古書から読み解く日本の文化: 和本の世界

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