Any imperfections in a given copy which affect the printed matter are recorded in a 590 note. The "unsavory vocabulary" devised by Leon Nemoy, former head of rare book cataloging at Yale, is used in imperfect notes.
|Wormed||eaten by worms (round holes, or winding channels through the paper)|
|Chewed||nibbled at by mice or rats, irregular pieces gnawed at the edges*|
|Frayed||irregular damage to margins through frequent use and abuse, with paper thinned and brittle|
|Bled||text cut into, and some lost through trimming of edges with sharp knife or shears|
|Browned||paper turned brown through exposure to weather or dry heat|
|Rubbed||page abraded, with type rendered indistinct or altogether illegible|
|Faded||type discolored through sunlight or other causes, with reduced legibility|
|Damp-stained||page spots due to water or other liquids|
|Mildewed||rainbow-colored stains, usually with paper made brittle or flaky|
*"Chewed by bookworms" is somewhat of a strain on the imagination--if worms have teeth, they must be very tiny
When entire pages of text or illustration are wanting, this is noted as specifically as possible. Other imperfections may be noted in a more general way if it is not feasible to detail the extent of imperfection.
|590||‡a BEIN 1999 580: Imperfect: plates and all before p. 7 and after p. 92 wanting; p. 31-32 mutilated; slightly wormed through p. 38; many pages bled at top, bottom and/or fore-edge.|
When volumes from a multi-volume monograph work are wanting, make an imperfect note.
|590||‡a BEIN 2021 333: Imperfect: v. 3-4 wanting.|