Weisse Handschuhe meist unsinnig

Die Benutzung weisser Handschuhe bei alten Büchern und Schriftquellen ist meist unsinnig (via Unbound Smithsonian Libraries):

  • Hands in gloves lack the tactility and manual dexterity of bare hands. Handling a book with gloved hands could lead to accidentally torn pages when the gloves catch on fragile edges, or a dropped book if the gloves prove to be loose or slippery.
  • Cotton gloves in particular have a tendency to lift fragments from pages, including pigments. Their fibers can catch in cracks that are invisible to the naked eye, further damaging friable pigments and inks.
  • This also means that cotton gloves retain a lot of dirt, making them not so clean after all! In this same vein, gloves cause the hands to sweat, and this moisture can penetrate the gloves to wind up on the books. Ew!


«But, like most things having to do with rare books, exceptions to the glove prohibition abound. The largest is photographic material: a large body of scientific evidence indicates that any amount of oil or residue on skin can react with the sensitive chemicals used in the photographic process. Another is books with lots of metal components (clasps, bosses, and protective corner-pieces), for similar reasons. A further important exception is made for otherwise “normal” rare books that contain toxic elements such as arsenic. While it is important that we strive not to damage books, it is far more important that the books do not damage you!»

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