In certain parts of China, the British Consul at Swatow observes, books are extremely liable to be attacked by insects. They first destroy the glue used in the backs of books, and gradually perforate the whole volume. Cockroaches, too, entirely disfigure the covers by eating away patches of the glazing.
The remedy for both these nuisances is easy. The late Dr. Hance, who had a large library, used the following recipe: -
Corrosive sublimate . 5 dr.
Creosote ... 60 drops.
Rectified spirit . 2 lb.
This mixture, a violent poison, he applied with a brush in the joint of the book at every 6 or 7 pages, and, as a preventive of the ravages of cockroaches, he varnished the cover of the book with a thin clear spirit-varnish. In binding books, it would be only necessary to add a small quantity of the above mixture to the glue used, and to give a coating of spirit-varnish to the cover, to secure complete protection from the attacks of insects of all kinds.