Publisher's cloth

A hardcover book comprised of cloth over hard pasteboard boards. Beginning toward the middle of the 19th Century, publishers began moving toward a tradition where the book had a finished binding as it was offered directly from the publisher. Prior to this change, the binding that a book was first produced with was considered to be a temporary covering awaiting a book binder to finalize with a fine leather covering. By the end of the 19th Century, the decorative cover that a publisher applied to a printed book was accepted to be the final binding, and publishers were customarily using the decoration and covering material of the binding as a sales tool and to reflect the content of the book.