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The historical use of technology in the preparation and production of written documents

Autor /IropyipType Dodano /30.04.2005

Reading newspapers, folders and catalogues, looking at posters, we do not stop to think how writing was shaped over centuries. It changed very slowly, supplementing consecutive stages of human evolution.
It is derived from memory signs, simple pictures.
These images were supposed to represent thoughts, ideas or e.g. important moments of social life. Drawings came before script , they gave foundations for its existence. For it is illustrative script containing pictures meant for free interpretation.

The most important reason why people started looking for something to write on, was the need to record signs and pictures. The development of such pictures and signs into writing was, in most cases dependant on the types of materials, which were available. The material, on which letters were written, made a hard and difficult way. The alphabet “went from stone to clay, from clay to papyrus, from papyrus to wax tablets, from wax tablets to parchment, parchment to paper”. Letters passing from one material to another continually changed the way they looked. The primitive man had to make his workshop from anything he was able to find. He had: stones, bones, leaves, clay pots, animal skins, bark and the largest then available “sheets of paper” – cave walls. As history shows, the first writing “tools and materials” turned out to be very good, as many of those writings survived till today. In Mesopotamia cuneiform writing was founded as a result of pressing signs with bamboo sticks on wet clay tablets, which were then dried out in the sun. The writing was about making vertical and horizontal lines, one beside the other, which resulted in various meanings.
Dependant on the type of line that was to be obtained, three types of chisels:
- triangular – to draw angles
- furrowed – to create nails
- rounded – to write numbers
The Greeks as well as the Romans did not like this way of writing, for them the tablets were too heavy. That is why they found a different surface. Wooden tablets covered with wax, sometimes mixed with tar in order to give them a darker shade and framed turned out to be much lighter. Rylecs, which looked like large nails, were used to write on the tablets. They were most often made of metal, wood or hard cane. The great advantage of this way of writing was that you could write on the tablet again after rubbing off the layer of wax. One tablet could not fit enough text that is why they were tied together through holes made in the frame. Two connected together tablets are called diptych, three – triptych, more than three – poliptych. A collection of tablets connected together resembled a tree trunk – caudex, that is where the name of the later form of book, came from.

The most common writing material that ancient Egyptians used, was stone.

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