Bookmarking is a common practice that allows us to keep track of where we left off in a book. It is a personal preference and there are various methods to do so – one of the most controversial ways of bookmarking is dog-earing. This is not to use an actual dog’s ear, but the practice of creating a folded-down corner on the page of the book.
In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of dog-ear bookmarking and help you make an informed decision on whether to adopt the practice or not.
Dog-earing is often criticized as being disrespectful to books, but let’s reframe this debate. Dog-earing is a personal preference and not inherently disrespectful. In fact, it has a long history and cultural significance.
Many people believe that folding a book is disrespectful because it bends the pages and damages the appearance of the book. However, this is subjective and depends on personal opinions and preferences.
Dog-earing has been a common practice for centuries and has been used as a way to mark pages in books before the invention of bookmarks. It is a simple and practical way to keep track of where you left off and can be a personal touch to a book.
While dog-ear bookmarking has its proponents, there are valid arguments against it as well.
One argument against dog ears is that they can cause irreversible damage to books. The bending of pages can weaken the spine and structure of the book, making it more susceptible to damage over time. This can impact the preservation of the book and reduce its lifespan.
Another argument against this way of bookmarking is that it leaves a permanent mark on a book’s appearance. This can detract from the aesthetic appeal of the book and may be seen as unsightly by some people.
The practice of dog-ear bookmarking to remember the page number of a book has a long history, dating back to medieval times. Bookmark people already existed in the 17th century.
In the medieval era, people used to use ribbons or strips of cloth as bookmarks. The invention of paper and printing led to the creation of paper bookmarks. With the advent of technology, digital bookmarks have become popular. But most people still use an old-fashioned paper or cloth bookmark.
In the 17th century, dog ears were a common way of marking pages in books. They were a symbol of intellectual culture and were used to show where the reader left off in a book. Many books dating from these times have been found to be dog-eared.
While this way of bookmarking has its drawbacks, it is not necessarily irreparable damage.
The impact on the preservation of books depends on several factors, including the type of book and how it is stored. If a book is stored properly and not subjected to the elements, it can be preserved well, whether it has been dog-eared or not.
In conclusion, the debate over dog-ear bookmarking is a personal preference and there are valid arguments on both sides. While some people believe that dog-earing is disrespectful and causes irreversible damage to books, others see it as a simple and practical way to mark pages and a personal touch to a book. Ultimately, the decision to do it or not comes down to individual preferences and priorities. I have to say I definitely own a few dog-eared books myself.
In summary, the pros of dog-ear bookmarking include its simplicity, practicality, and cultural significance. On the other hand, the cons include the risk of irreversible damage to books and the permanent impact on a book’s appearance.
To make an informed decision on whether to adopt the practice of dog-ear bookmarking or not, it’s important to consider your own preferences and priorities. If you prioritize the preservation of books and their appearance, you may opt to avoid the ears.
But if you see it as a simple and practical way to mark your place in a book, then go ahead and dog-ear to your heart’s content! The reason many people do it is probably because dog ears are basically free bookmarks. Yes, I did that to my own books. I guess I am one of the bookmark people. Some, however, are also from second-hand books.