Double elephant and pinched post

I’m fascinated by names, all sort of names, and so is my character, Thomas Radwinter in my genealogical mysteries.

In my latest novel, Thomas remarks, “What is a madcap I wonder… A fool’s cap maybe… Like a jester’s headgear the thing with bells on and is that anything to do with the old way of measuring paper, foolscap and I deviate to find other old paper sizes, octavo quarto, and would you believe it duchess, duke and Albert!

I only had him look up a few examples of paper size, but later I went back and found out some of the sizes we used before it all became uniformly A – A1 – A5 – how dull.

I’ve missed out some, but just compare ‘A’ to:

  • Emperor
  • Quad demy
  • Antiquarian
  • Grand eagle
  • Double elephant
  • Atlas
  • Colombier
  • Double demy
  • Imperial
  • Double large post
  • Elephant
  • Princess
  • Cartridge
  • Royal
  • Double post
  • Super royal
  • Broadsheet
  • Demy
  • Crown
  • Pinched post
  • Foolscap
  • Brief
  • Pott

If you look just on Wikipedia, not on a site which is to do with paper, there is a huge index on size:

International paper sizes

  • A series
  • B series
  • C series

Overview: ISO paper sizes

  • German extensions
  • Swedish extensions
  • Japanese B-series variant

North American paper sizes

  • Loose sizes
  • Common loose sizes
  • Usage and adoption
  • Variant loose sizes
  • Standardized American paper sizes
  • Architectural sizes
  • Other sizes
  • Notebook sizes
  • Office sizes
  • Photography sizes
  • Postage sizes
  • Grain

… Maybe you’re not so interested… I was… and Thomas was! Here is a link to my ebooks about Thomas, and my other books too:


    1. Lois

      It does! When you’re writing on actual paper the size makes a big difference… I always have an A6 notebook to hand when I’m going through something I’ve written to jot things down, but never use that size at any other time!

      Liked by 1 person

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