Monday, December 13, 2010

An adventure to the Middle East ( Part 5 ) Papyrus Making Demo

On our   way back to the ship.... we  stopped at a Papyrus Factory and store along the way where we had a papyrus making demo.

Papyrus is the ancient Egyptian invention for writing paper and it was considered the most important writing material in the ancient world. The word " paper " is derived from the word papyrus. The papyrus is a common marsh plant which has a rectangular reed that grows along the banks of the Nile River. The paper is made from the pith of a papyrus. The stall stems are cut down and carried in bundles.

Each stem is stripped of its rind and cut into short pieces which were then cut lengthwise into narrow strips.

The papyrus pith is then soaked in water until the fibers become flexible and translucent.

Then two layers of papyrus strips are arranged at right angles and placed on a hard flat object and beaten then pressed to take out any excess water.

Then the sheets are  left out to dry under direct sunlight for several days. After which these sheets will be polished and glued together to form scrolls. Painting was carried out using colors.

The way the papyrus was made in Egypt is a replica of that one used 3000 years ago. There are no chemicals, additives or modifiers used.

Be careful in buying papyrus in the souks. According to Randa most of the papyrus-look-alike are made of banana stalks.

I hope this bit of information was very useful to you --- in case you are thinking of purchasing a papyrus while you are in Egypt.


1 comment:

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