Iron gall ink

When ink burns.

Ink corrosion treatment

The ink used in many manuscripts was made from a mixture of iron salts and gallic acid. The recipe for making iron gall ink is over two thousand years old and has been modified in its composition in countless variations. Hence the problem: an excess of iron damages the paper due to a catalytic process, and an excess of gallic acid literally burns the paper until it disintegrates.

Our services include deacidification with water enriched with calcium carbonate and the neutralisation of iron ions with phytates to stop the corrosion process of the carrier material.

Damage due to corrosion is repaired by laminating the paper with very thin and almost invisible Japanese tissue. Faults are treated with a stabilisation method based on gelatine and Japanese paper.

We provide analytical methods and treatment methods to guarantee the durability and recover the necessary stability of your manuscripts, thus making it possible to consult them again.

Main projects

Hessiches Hauptstaatsarchiv

date: 2015-2020

Decontamination and restoration of 91,000 sheets from the “Altes Dillenburger Archiv” affected by mould.

Elche’s Municipal Historical Archive

date: 2016-2018

Restoration work and preventive conservation of books and documents.

We are here for you.

We will be happy to advise you on any type of conservation or restoration service.

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