Writ­ing his­tory

Country Life Every Week - - Letters To The Editor -

IAM in­ter­ested in the ar­ti­cle ‘How galling’ (Au­gust 10), but would like another on galls as a source for ink. I was sur­prised it wasn’t men­tioned. My un­der­stand­ing is that galls, es­pe­cially oak, pro­vided the main if not only source of ink for many cen­turies. Jean­nette Harper, by email Ed—you’re quite right. Iron-gall ink, made from crushed oak galls soaked in wa­ter (or some­times wine), fer­rous sul­phate and gum ara­bic, is one of the most fre­quently found inks in manuscripts from the Mid­dle Ages to the 19th cen­tury.

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