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The Introduction of Paper

Paper is believed to have been invented by Ts'ai Lun c.105 in China, where it reached an advanced state of development. Chinese paper was a mixture of bark and hemp. Papermaking spread to Japan c.610 and to Samarkand c.751, whence it was introduced by the Arabs into Egypt c.900 and by the Moors into Spain at Játiva c.1150. Mills were established in Italy c.1276; in France, c.1348; in Germany, 1390; and in England, 1495. European paper was usually made of flax and hemp. Primitive bark paper had been made in Mexico and Central America in pre-Columbian times. Paper was first produced in the American colonies in 1690 by William Rittenhouse at Germantown.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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