alchemist's paper Technology / Science in Scarterra | World Anvil

alchemist's paper

Alchemist's paper, is normally paired with alchemist's ink and alchemist's sealer, when these things are combined, it makes very hardy documents.   When the proper paper is written on with the proper ink, and then sealed and dried (which takes about 48 hours), the writing on the paper is very long lasting.   Alchemist's paper is not invincible but it takes more effort to tear than normal paper up to the point where it almost never gets torn accidentally.   It's fire resistant, relative to normal paper or parchment. Fire is probably the fastest way to destroy it, but someone has more time to save the document and extinguish the flames.   Most importantly, alchemist's paper is fairly water resistant. It can't sit submerged in the ocean for weaks on end and stay readable but it can stand up to spilled cups and moderate rain.   It also holds up to the ravages of time better.  


  The ability to create element resistant might have existed in the Second Age, but if it did, it was viewed as an unnecessary novelty. Only after the Second Unmaking wiped out 99% of all written documents did it seem necessary to create long lasting written records.   Preservation of things has long been a major element of alchemical science since the inception of alchemy itself. Based on surviving alchemist's lore on preservation of food, wood and metal, Lunatan alchemists eventually developed modern alchemist's paper, after experimenting with scores of incrementally improved versions of normal paper.   Then the lore spread to the wider world when introduced to humans in the early years after Lunatus morphed into the Elven Empire.

Social Impact

Alchemist's paper is not normally used for everyday writing, but it is standard practice in some specific niches.   The vast majority of magic scrolls are made on alchemist's paper. Given how expensive magic scrolls are, the additional cost of using alchemist's paper in lieu of regular paper is trivial.   Likewise, most illuminated manuscripts use alchemist's paper. Given the overall cost of time and money in the project, the additional cost of alchemist's paper is trivial.   Most hermetic spell books are made of alchemist's paper because wizards value their spell book as much as they value their internal organs.   Since maps are often used outside in the elements, most quality maps that are sold and traded are on alchemist's paper.
Parent Technologies
Access & Availability
The lore of making alchemist's paper is widely spread but the cost is prohibitive so it is not commonly used. Writing with alchemist's ink and paper costs roughly three times what writing with normal ink and paper costs.
Related Species

Cover image: quill and inkwell by Chris Chow


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