Print Publication Year:2010
Online Publication Date:August 2010
Original Publication Year:1801
Subjects: Printing and publishing history , English literature: general interest
Matthias Koops was a pioneer of mechanical paper-making. He invented new processes for making paper from wood pulp rather than from rags, and for recycling paper itself to a condition in which it could be used for printing. The second edition (1801) of his book was printed partly on a type of straw paper and partly on recycled paper; the Appendix was 'printed on paper made from wood alone, the produce of this country'. Koops's aim was to overcome the problem of the scarcity of rags for paper-making, which he believed was a restraint on the development of commerce and of science, by producing paper from natural sources which were almost inexhaustible. However, the factory which he established went bankrupt after only one year, and it was to be nearly two centuries before printing books on recycled paper became a practical possibility for the industry.