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Glossary Page F

Page history last edited by Gwen Foss 15 years, 5 months ago



Glossary of Book and Ephemera Terms and Abbreviations


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F. [Fine]. a very high condition grade, nearly [As New], but not perfectly crisp; there are no defects of any kind, no torn pages or any other flaws. See [condition terms].


f. / fo. / fol. [folio].


Fabrikoid (brand name). an inexpensive coated paper with an [imitation leather] finish, commonly used for the bindings of inexpensive [hardcovers] such as [book club editions]. In use as early as 1933.


facsim. [facsimile].


facsimile. 1. an exact reproduction, usually taken from a photo, of an original work, retaining the colors and details of the original. Facsimiles of artworks and [autograph letters] are often printed as [illustrations] in books; they are of a much higher quality than [photocopies]. Abbreviated facsim.


facsimile reprint. a modern type of [reprint] in which an old and usually rare book has been reproduced, page by page, directly from the original, with no changes made. Facsimile reprints are usually of very high quality, unlike [photocopies] or [Books on Demand]. Compare [stereotype edition].


FAE. first American edition. See [first edition].


fair. quite worn. Such a book has all its text pages including those with maps or [plates], but may lack [endpapers], [half title], or other pages, as noted. See [condition terms].


fake. imitation.


fake book. a type of songbook in which only the melody line and guitar chord symbols are shown; it is used by any musician who wants to be able to perform well-known pop songs or folksongs but only needs a musical "skeleton" to play from. Such music is called "fake" because it does not contain the accompaniment written out. Some keyboard players and other musicians use "fake" music and improvise the harmony while performing: thus they are said, without malice, to be "faking it." Some fake books are one-of-a-kind items homemade by musicians but there are also authorized publications.


false. imitation.


false bands. decorative [raised bands] attached to the exterior of the [backstrip] of a book for visual effect, usually to impart a more antique look.


faux. The French word for [fake]. Pronounced FOH.


faux-cuir. French: fake leather.


faux leather. [imitation leather].


feathered edges. another name for [deckle edges].


ferroprussiate print. another term for [cyanotype].


ferrotype. another name for [tintype].


ff. 1. folios; the plural of [folio]. 2. bold type; an abbreviation of fullface.


FFEP / ffep / front free endpaper. that half of the front [endpaper] that is not attached to the inside front cover. Sometimes called a [flyleaf].


fibercoid. a type of very thick, heavy [buckram] cloth.


fiction. written material not based on fact, including all types of novels, short stories, and other literature. (Note: A novel loosely based on real events is still considered fiction, not fact.) The opposite is [nonfiction].


figures. general term for printed features other than simple text, including diagrams, [tables], graphs, formulas, and [musical examples].


file photo / wire photo. a form of [ephemera] being an original news photo issued by a news agency such as International News, Associated Press, or United Press International. Circulated in limited quantities, usually of about 25 to 50. Used extensively in newspapers and other print media in the early to mid 1900s. Authentic file photos can be distinguished by one or more of the following signs: photographer or news agency rubber [stamp]; newsprint [caption] attached on the reverse, or on the front for some post-1950s examples; age of the photographic paper.


filk song. a species of song usually consisting of a new lyric written to a familiar tune, and expressing the author's personal attachment to a particular TV show, movie, or star. Filk music is usually met with among science fiction, fantasy, and horror fans. Books of filk songs are usually self published and have a limited circulation.


fillet. long narrow line, rectangular ornament, or repetitive design. Often seen on decorative leather bindings.


filmography. list of films made by one person, or related by a theme. Often found as an [appendix].


fine. A very high condition grade. Such a book is nearly [As New] but is not perfectly crisp; there are no defects of any kind, no torn pages or any other flaws. Some dealers never grade above Fine. See [condition terms].


fine binding. general term for any book having a rich, expensive, tastefully done [binding], usually of high quality leather. This refers to the materials and artistry of the binding and is not to be confused with [Fine] as an indication of condition.


finger tab. small extension from the edge of a [leaf] used to find a particular section in the book. Mainly a feature of reference books, also sometimes seen marking the index of a large catalog. Also called index tab, extension tab, thumb tab.


first. see [first edition].


first edition. first appearance of a work in book or [pamphlet] form, in its first printing. Only a 1st edition, 1st printing should be described as a "first;" a later printing, such as a 1st edition, 17th printing, should never be. First editions of certain works of [fiction], and some [nonfiction], are quite valuable, depending on the collectibility of the author and the condition of the copy. There is no general rule to follow for identifying firsts; every publisher follows its own style; however, there are reference books available. Many books, such as some [book club editions], carry the words "first edition" on the [copyright page] but are in fact [reprints], not actual firsts. See [dimple]. See also [printing], [point of issue], [state], [true first].


first and second printing before publication. a statement, usually found on the [copyright page], that indicates the publisher was extremely successful in promoting the book and had more orders before the actual publication date than the first [printing] would cover, therefore a second printing was ordered. Such books are not [first editions].


first issue. see [point of issue].


first printing. see [printing].


first separate edition. first appearance as a complete book of a work that has previously appeared as part of another book, or in a [periodical]. Sometimes called "first edition in book form."


first state. see [state].


first thus. not a [true first], but something about this edition is new: it may be revised, have a new [introduction], be in [paperback] for the first time, have new [illustrations], be the first edition by another publisher, and so forth.


first trade edition. first edition produced for general commercial sale, as distinguished from a [limited edition]. See [trade edition].


flag. another name for [masthead].


flaked / flaking. 1. refers to pale areas on cloth caused by loss of bits of the coating or filling used to fortify the cloth. 2. refers to spots on leather caused by loss of bits of the finish.


flap book. book with a self-closing [binding], having one cover or flap that extends far beyond the [fore-edge] and folds around the fore-edge of the book. Types of flap include the [envelope flap], [tuck], and [wallet edge].


flapping. (adj.) refers to a torn area where a portion of material is attached only along one edge.


flat stapled. another name for [side stitch].


flexibinding. a very recently invented type of binding having very thin, stiff yet flexible covers. As sturdy as a traditional [hardcover] but as lightweight as a [softcover].


flexible binding. general term for a book bound in any [limp] material such as soft leather, [leatherette], [vinyl], or occasionally cloth, which is either applied over very thin [boards] that can be slightly bent without leaving a crease, or is unbacked.


flip-flop book. another name for a [double]: two books bound together back to back.


floated. (adj.) preserved between [glassine] sheets. Usually describes a page in a repaired or restored [antiquarian] book.


flocked. having a texture resembling felt or pulverized wool.


flyer. a type of [ephemera] consisting of a one-page advertisement printed on light-weight paper or [card stock] and usually distributed by hand. Other names are handout, handbill, circular, and throwaway. Compare [broadside].


flyleaf. blank page following the [front free endpaper], or at the end of a book where there is not sufficient text to fill out the last few pages.


fly title. another name for [bastard title].


FN. [Fine]. See [condition terms].


FO / fo. former [owner].


foil. shiny, metallic paper. For example, Little Golden Books have gold foil over the [spines].


fold-and-staple. another name for [saddle stitch], a type of binding.


fold-out. (n.) a page wider or taller than the book; it has to be folded out to be fully seen. Fold-outs are often used for maps, [tables], and very large [illustrations]. Two opposing fold-outs on the same [spread] are called a [gate-fold].


foldwear. wear long the folded edge. On a [dust jacket] this generally refers to the places where the paper is folded around the [boards].


foliated. 1. printed with page numbers appearing only on one out of two pages. 2. refers to a leafy ornament.


folio. 1. a very large book, (32 cm) 13" tall or more. See [size terms]. 2. a [leaf] numbered only on the front; the leaves of such a book are said to be foliated. 3. the numeral printed on a foliated leaf. 4. See [TomFolio].


foolscap. an old English standard paper size measuring (30 x 37 cm) 13 1/2" x 17".


foot. 1. bottom of the book. 2. bottom end of the [spine], also called the [heel].


fore-edge. the front edge of the book, opposite from the [spine]; the furthest edge when the book is shelved. Sometimes spelled foredge.


fore-edge painting. painting visible only when the page edges of a book are bent back to expose a greater area. Such paintings, when [contemporary] with the book, usually increase the value. Usually watercolors are used, and when the book is closed the painting cannot be seen, but some fore-edge paintings can be seen only when the book is closed.


foreword. another name for [introduction]. Compare [preface].


Fotonovel (brand name). a [mass market paperback] based on a current, popular movie or television series, filled with hundreds of color glossy still photos from the show, in the same order as in the show, and having the story and dialog added to the photos in comic-book style. Peak of popularity was about 1977 to 1982. They began to die out as home video became affordable. Compare [photoplay].


4to. [quarto]. See also [size terms].


foxed. see [foxing].


foxing. irregular brown spotting of the paper. Commonly found on older paper and most particularly on [engravings]. There are three known or suspected causes of foxing: oxidation or rust of mineral particles in the paper, certain inks that bleed, and the presence of [mold] spores. Foxing is common in books of the 1800s and earlier; it is not considered a serious defect but should be noted. Also called foxed, foxmarks.


foxmarks. see [foxing].


fp. full page.


fpd / FPD. front [paste-down]. Another name for the half of the front [endpaper] pasted to the inside [cover] of the book.


FPT. Freight Pass Through. indication that the price shown includes list price plus freight, and also that the price will be lower to booksellers and libraries, in order to help them pay for freight. Usually when found, it is printed on the [dust jacket] next to the retail price.


FR / fr. [Fair]. See [condition terms].


Fraktur (German: broken). the medieval style of lettering which was standard in Germany until the 1930s. English terms that are more or less equivalent are Gothic type and Black Letter.


frass. spots and stains, including excretions and body parts, left behind by insects. Often found in used books but not a common term in book descriptions.


frayed. very worn or unraveled at the [edges], usually referring to cloth having short, loose threads jutting out.


free endpaper. see [endpaper].


French covers / French binding / French flaps. 1. refers to a [softcover] with a [dust jacket], sometimes having the jacket flaps folded over the top, bottom, and sides of the covers, and sometimes being affixed to the book along the [spine]. 2. refers to a [softcover] with the [covers] folded in to make flaps; these are sometimes called "integral wrappers."


frontispiece. [illustration] at the beginning of a book, usually facing the [title page], often of high quality, and sometimes the only illustration in the book. Abbreviated frontis, f/piece.


front matter / preliminary matter / prelims. pages preceding the main text of a book. There are many items that commonly appear in the front matter, usually in the following order: half or [bastard title], [frontispiece], [title page], [copyright page], [dedication page], [preface], [table of contents], list of illustrations, [foreword] or [introduction], acknowledgments, [half title].


frt. front.


full. covering the entire outer parts of the book. Usually seen as "full cloth," meaning the [covers] and [backstrip] are completely covered with a single piece of cloth, or as "full leather."



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This glossary was written and compiled by Gwen Foss of Alan's Used Books with thanks to the many independent bookdealers of TomFolio.com



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