What Was Parchment Paper Made of in Ancient Times?

Parchment paper has been used for centuries as a writing surface. In ancient times, parchment paper was made from animal skin, typically from goats or sheep. The process of making parchment paper was quite labor-intensive, involving many steps.

To begin with, the animal skin was removed from the animal and soaked in water for several days to remove any remaining flesh and hair. After that, it was stretched and scraped with a curved knife to remove any remaining hair or flesh.

Next, the parchment maker would rub the skin with a pumice stone to create a smooth surface. This would be followed by soaking the skin in a solution of lime and water for several days to soften it.

Once the skin had been soaked and softened, it would be stretched again and scraped with a knife to remove any remaining lime. The parchment maker would then stretch the skin over a frame and leave it to dry in the sun.

After drying, the parchment paper would be cut into sheets of varying sizes depending on its intended use. These sheets could then be used for writing or drawing on.

In ancient times, parchment paper was highly valued due to its durability and resistance to tearing. It was also much more expensive than other writing surfaces such as papyrus or clay tablets.

Today, parchment paper is still used in various applications such as baking or cooking due to its non-stick properties. However, modern parchment paper is typically made from wood pulp rather than animal skins.

In conclusion, ancient parchment paper was made from animal skins that went through a long process involving soaking, stretching, scraping and drying. Its durability made it highly sought after despite being more expensive than other writing surfaces of its time. While modern-day parchment paper is no longer made using these methods or materials, its legacy lives on in various industries that still rely on this versatile material.