What is foxing?

foxing meaning in Information Science terminology / glossary / dictionary is:

Reddish-brown or yellowish spots resembling freckles on the paper of old documents (books, prints, etc.), a condition attributed to the effects of micro-organisms on iron or copper impurities in the paper under humid conditions. Particularly common in paper made by machine in the late 18th and 19th centuries, foxing can vary in extent from barely visible to ruinous. Although the cause (or causes) are not fully understood, the fact that foxing often begins near the edge of a leaf or sheet and spreads inward suggests that exposure to the atmosphere may play an important role. In some types of documents, foxing can be reduced or eliminated by a technique called washing, but preservationists proceed with caution because some methods can cause further damage. Click here to see heavy foxing in a copy of the first edition of Life in Colonial Mexico published in Madrid in 1630 (Georgetown University Libraries) and here to see light foxing in a 19th-century edition (University of Pittsburgh Libraries). Synonymous with foxmarks.


reference: ABC-CLIO