Liturgical books have always revealed both the skill of the craftsmanship and the quality of the art any particular age could achieve. To assess such achievements, not only all features inside the book must be considered (such as paper and fonts), but the exterior of the volume as well. Following the best of this tradition, our new edition of the Breviarium Romanum will stand out as a liturgical book that indeed epitomizes the very best that can be produced in large quantities in our day. We take pride in having partners in this endeavour, who share our high standards of quality. Lost for the most part in today's world is the fine art of liturgical bookbinding once common among bookprinters and bookbinders. So we are happy to present you with these volumes rivalling the best the craft has produced in the past.

Bible paper; 28gm toned off-white paper

This breviary has been printed on a good quality off-white bible paper, 28 grams per square meter (28gsm). (In contrast, regular copy paper is 80 gsm (or 21lb wt).

Today there are only two companies in Europe able to manufacture this kind of ultra thin paper at all. Worldwide there is only a handful of printers able to produce a bicolour printing with such fine paper, and still be able to fold and crease the sheets.

In its weight and color, this paper is of a similar quality to the paper generally used by liturgical publishers in the past. It is impossible to use paper any thinner than this! Because the sheets are so fine, the volumes are only 30 and 32mm thick, and measure 1460 pages per inch (575 pages / cm)!

Cover and Measurements

The cover is made of relatively smooth flexible leather. Each volume is 11.8 cm wide and 18 cm high. They weigh 540 and 480 gramms, respectively.

The spine has embossed lettering in gold, and five imitation raised bands. In addition there is blind embossing around the entire cover.

The cover is flexible leather

The cover is made of relatively smooth black calf leather. In the picture you can see that the cover will be just as flexible as were earlier breviaries.

In addition we set special value on the feature that after flipping the book open the volume in fact stays open and does not fold up by itself. By our skilled use of various techniques we have effectively achieved a desirable result comparable to that of older editions of breviaries.

Rounded corners, gold edging, ribbon markers

A "sine qua non" for liturgical books is rounded corners. This prevents wrinkling or creasing or any other damage to the thin bible paper. And of course, these volumes have gold edges on all three sides. Indeed rare in these days are the six ribbon markers, each affixed in a different spot at the head of the book. This must be done by hand since modern bookbinding machines can only affix two ribbons at a time, and only in the same place. Our bookbinders are in this present time unique in offering this. The green ribbon might be slightly lighter than in the current photo. According to the advice of experienced priests we only chose dark colors, so they still remain attractive after the volumes have been used for a while.

Special Details

When planning this new edition, a most important feature was that it be user-friendly. Durability was also an important feature to consider. A weakness found in many modern liturgical books is the so-called "inner hinge" (i.e. the hinge is the point where the bulk of the book, or the block, is attached to the cover). By the use of special techniques, we have assured that the inner hinge is strong and long-lasting.

The pages of the book should be protected from holy cards or prayer cards that might be put in the book by the owner, because these cards might be humid and could damage the bible paper. In order to prevent this, we chose watertight endpapers of artificial leather, that are of the same quality as as materials used in the older breviaries.

This photo shows another detail that will be even more obvious once you have the book in your hand and are using it. The red (or black) artificial leather of the endpaper has a snow-white back. In order to prevent this snow-white colour from contrasting with the first page of the block (with its slightly yellow tone) the back of the endpaper has been laminated with the same paper as the first pages of the text. This is visually more pleasing as well, because one doesn't see a strip of snow white paper down on either side of the opened pages. It prevents a visual distraction this way.

Prayer Cards

The two volume set will be accompanied by 8 separate prayer cards. These cards contain text that is often repeated. To see information about the content of these cards see the tab labelled "Interior". In order to make the cards more durable, we had them laminated both front and back. This prevents creasing or wrinkling, and even the soiling of its surface from much use. The cards also have rounded corners in order to protect the pages of the book, and the card itself.

Breviary Cover - Supplementary Equipment

Since publishing the new edition of the breviary, we have received many requests for a special cover to protect the volumes. Unfortunately these days only zipper covers of various sizes are available. One standard zipper cover currently available fits our breviary volumes. But we do not think it provides adequate protection for such precious books. Over time by zipper movement the gilt edging can be damaged and even slight pressure on the closed zipper will leave permanent marks on the edge. Besides the ribbons will definitely be torn after a while.

So it is essential to offer a breviary cover that will avoid such damages. So we looked for a manufacturer who could produce a good protective cover according to old samples that will meet time honoured specifications.
The picture on this page shows such a cover. The book is slipped into the slipcase, as if it were put into a large-sized envelope. The lid is then slid into the case as if an envelope were closed but not sealed. If you want to take out the breviary, just pull the flap and remove the book from the case.
We suggest you have only one breviary slipcase as it can be used for either volume whichever is currently in use is in the cover, with the other being safe at home.
The price for a breviary cover while ordering a complete set of the Breviarium Romanum: 30,- EUR (no additional cost for shipping).

The Price for a breviary cover without ordering the set of breviaries: 40,- EUR plus shipping.

If you wish to order this cover, please go to the "ordering info" page, and request this item in the remarks section.