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chapbook

A very short, cheaply produced volume, of a few leaves. Modern chapbooks may be a collection of folded leaves loosely held in a folded cardboard or stiff paper cover, or the pages might be stapled. Historically, chapbooks were introduced in the 16th Century to meet the demands of a growing literate populace by allowing for very cheap books. The term chapbook was introduced in the early 19th Century, referring to chapmen, a term describing street peddlers who were the common salesmen of these cheap volumes.


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