I usually attend auctions in the area when time permits. Most auctions are not interesting, but some can be quite a surprise. I went to the preview at a local antique furniture auction some years ago because the description indicated that they would have books. Among the lots marked ‘collectibles’ I found a large folio of Livy’s History printed in Germany in 1588. What shocked me the most was not the print date, but how it had been rebound. Somebody had wrapped the book in kitchen style linoleum and attached rubber cording along the edges. The work seemed to have been done sometime in the 60s and it was without a doubt the worst binding job that I have ever seen. I made an instant decision that the book had to be saved from further destruction, so I attended the auction and won the bid. After returning home, I called my book binder and informed him about what I was sending him. The book was mailed, and he called within a week. You cannot imagine, he told me, what I found when I took the binding apart. The remains of the old pasteboards are still present, and they have fragments of handwritten paper attached. And, he said, they used fragments with text as reinforcement on the spine as well. While reviewing the images that he later emailed, I realized the script was in Latin. But I had no idea of what. I emailed the images to a friend who is a classical scholar and he replied within a day that the Latin was from Cicero’s Epistles. [How he could figure that out, I have no idea]. But this finding led to another problem. How to create a new binding that would not cover up the fragments. I called my binder to discuss the matter. Let me think about it, he said, and I will get back to you. A couple of days later, he called. I will make a binding with a spine that is detachable. The uploaded image shows the binding with the spine removed. The detachable spine basically slides in and attaches to the boards. An absolutely simple solution that allows the fragments to be accessible. The other fragments were loosely inserted on the inside front board.