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activities, of the sciences, of history, of biography, etc., should be freely indexed, for to such works an index is the finger-post that guides the reader through the maze of thought into which the whole fabric is woven; it is more necessary than a contents, and more important than even a preface.

Excepting the greater part of fiction, all books that are worth the writing and the printing are entitled to a good index.



In printing, a proof is a printed trial sheet showing the contents or condition of matter in type, or of an electrotype or stereotype plate, engraved block, or the like, either with or without marked corrections. First, second third, etc., proofs designate proofs of a work in its progress toward completion.

An author's proof is a clean proof for revision or correction by an author, or a proof returned by him on which he has made his corrections.

“His manuscripts, as well as his proofs, were commonly so disfigured by corrections as to be read with difficulty even by those familiar with his script," wrote John Bigelow of William Cullen Bryant, and it might be as truly said of thousands of writers who preceded or succeeded him. No department adds so quickly to the cost of producing a book as that of correction, for the work of correcting is timexwork, and, therefore, is paid for by the time it takes. Every author should so prepare his copy as to minimize this charge.

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The manner in which correction-marks are made on a proof is of great importance in the saving of time. Time saved is money saved to the author, who may save time by writing his corrections neatly and clearly. Straggling, unsymmetrical characters, disconnected marks placed in the margins above or below the lines to which they relate, irregular lines leading from an incorrect letter or word to a correction, large marks, marks made with a blunt pencil, indistinct marks, and the frequent use of an eraser to obliterate marks hastily or incorrectly made, are all faults to be avoided. Corrections so made are not respected by the compositor, and he is frequently annoyed and delayed in deciphering what is intended. In reading proof the corrector should take advantage of white space as near as possible to the error and place the correction thereon, thus aiding all who have occasion to handle the proof afterward.



To indicate alterations to be made in the type, place in the margin of the proof marks corresponding to those placed where the corrections are to be made. Make these marks clearly and

neatly. The marks may be explained briefly as follows:

1, push down space or quad showing with type.

center, bring the opposite line to the place indicated by r. # , insert space where caret (W) is made.

take out letters or words canceled. In eliminating matter from proof, be sure to use the printer's mark for deletion. Do not follow the example set by a college professor (and cited in “A Publisher's Confession") who cut a paragraph out of a proof-sheet with a pair of scissors, being fully satisfied that by this method the printer would understand that he intended the excised matter should be deleted.

turn inverted letter underscored. stet, restore word or letter inadvertently canceled (literally, “let it stand”).

y, insert apostrophe. Other superior characters are similarly indicated by being placed in an inverted caret, as, , and for inferior characters the caret is made in its usual position -as, A.

indent line an em.

, bring matter to the left. The mark is reversed (7) when it is desired to move matter to the right.


?, a correction suggested to the author, to be followed by an interrogation-point. L, lower word or letter. To raise a word or letter, the sign is used. O, insert period.

The change of a word or of a letter is indicated by a line drawn through the faulty matter, the word or letter to be substituted being written opposite in the margin.

Omitted words or letters are indicated in the same manner, a caret being placed where the insertion is to be made.

ll, justify the lines--that is, space so that the margin will appear even and straight.

X, broken letter. A logotype character is indicated by a tie-as, ff. caps, change matter underlined to capitals. tr., transpose words or letter underlined.

draw together matter indicated by a similar mark in type,

No T, run on matter without break.

I, a combination of and C, signifying "Take out canceled character and close up." 1. C., change matter underlined to lower-case.

, straighten lines. rom., roman type. If too much matter has been omitted by the

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