Posted on May 24, 2023 at 2:00 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

The idea of recycling isn't new — medieval book binders were glad to put parchment from older books to use in the covers of newer ones.

And the use of technology to try to discover what got repurposed isn't new either.

But here's the latest iteration of trying to find history's secrets without destroying them: CT scanning, like is used in hospitals.

The New York Times chatted with the University of Iowa research team that sent a set of 16th-century books through a CT scanner, discovering that some of the covers came from a Latin Bible dating to the 11th or 12th century.

The legibility of the text depended on the color of the ink, as it turns out, and it isn't that the darker ones showed up better.

Researchers might vary the energy of the X-rays in the scanner in the future, in hopes of making all the ink equally clear.

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Categories: Today in Books

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