In December 2007 we discussed a creepy book
bound in human skin. I can't say I know of any numismatic
book in such a binding. On a related note, Len Augsburger
forwarded this article about a book once believed to be bound in
human skin which turned out not to be. -Editor
A centuries-old book long thought to be bound in human skin
actually isn’t, researchers at Harvard University said.
Scientist Daniel Kirby determined the book’s cover is made
from sheepskin, debunking a myth that’s piqued students’ interest
"I think everyone had their doubts all along," said Kirby, who
used a method called mass peptide fingerprinting to reach his
He also determined the book’s glue is made from cattle and pig
collagen. The 17th century book is part of the Harvard Law
School’s library. The legend’s origin can be blamed on an
inscription on the last page of the book, written
"The bynding of this booke is all that remains of my dear
friende Jonas Wright, who was flayed alive by the Wavuma on the
Fourth Day of August, 1632," it reads, according to a blog post
on Harvard’s website. "King Mbesa did give me the book, it being
one of poore Jonas chiefe possessions, together with ample of his
skin to bynd it. Requiescat in pace."
But Kirby’s results don’t mean the book was never bound in
human skin. "It’s a possibility that it had been recovered before
it came into the collection," he said.
To read the complete article, see:
Harvard Law Book Isn’t Bound In Human Skin After All
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see: CREEPY
HUMAN-SKIN BOUND BOOK OFFERED
Wayne Homren, Editor
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