Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Vietnamese herbs and Sweet-smelling books

A farm family in the central province of Thanh Hoa is effectively preserving more than 400 ancient books with medicinal herbs.
Tran Van Luu, a farmer in Thang Loc hamlet, Ngu Loc commune, Hau Loc district in Thanh Hoa province, has over 400 ancient books of all kinds, which are the assets of many generations of his family.
There are some rare books in Luu’s bookcase, for example Du dia chi Vietnam, Thuoc bang thao duoc, Dai phap vi su, etc. which are written on do paper (paper that is made from bark of the Rhamnonneuron tree) and Indian ink.
In the Cimaron typhoon in 2006, all of these books were flooded in mud and seawater and some of them are damaged by moths. Luu invented one kind of substance to preserve his books from available medicinal herbs in Vietnam, which is highly effective.Luu said that he maintained the ancient books by boiling these medicinal herbs and washing the books with this kind of water. After that, he embalmed the books with the medicinal herbs again and dried them under sunlight.
Thanks to this special substance, the whole ancient books of Luu’s family are kept untouched. Pages are complete and don’t stick together. Moreover, books are sweet-smelling and not mold in the wet weather of Vietnam.(from Vietnamnet)

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