Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Making of Palm Leaf Manuscripts in Laos

The pictures shown here are borrowed from Laomanuscripts.net and it shows a step by step process of how bylan (palm leaf) is made.  If you've never seen it before, it's quite interesting!  Bylan can last for decades and centuries if well stored and taken care of.

The Making of Palm Leaf Manuscripts in Laos (bailan bylan)

Palm leaf is called bylan (alt: bailan) in Lao.  Nowadays, they are used almost entirely for the creation and copying of Buddhist doctrine into manuscripts.  In previous decades, they were also used by the general public to record important information and dates. 

The use of bylan is very much an ancient tradition of publishing that originated likely in India.  In this part of the world it came before modern tree pulp paper manufacturing.

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