The world's largest book takes six people to turn a page

The world's largest book takes six people to turn a page
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By Louise MinerGabor Kiss
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71-year-old Béla Varga said the book - which covers the flora and fauna of Hungary - was as big as it can possibly be.


Szinpetri is a small village in northern Hungary, with less than 300 residents, but it is also home to the largest handmade book in the world.

The giant volume was crafted using traditional book-binding techniques, adjusted to a much larger scale of course, and was created by 71-year-old Béla Varga.

"It was impossible to make it larger," said Varga. "That's why the dimensions of the book are 4.18m x 3.77m. I would rather cut one finger than make it smaller by five centimetres."

There are 346 pages, it weighs 1420 kgs, and the subject is about flora and fauna, caves and architecture of the region.

"It's unique not only because of the size but because of the techniques: it was made like ancient codes, with wooden tables from Sweden and with the leather of 13 cows from Argentina," added Varga.

Special screws were used for six people and a machine to turn a page.

"We had to make a smaller copy of the book. That was the condition of the Guinness book of records. This one is 11.4 kgs. This is completely the same as the big one."

Varga received a special gift from the prime minister of Bhutan: a yak's tail.

"In the temples of Bhutan the yak hair from the tail is used to clean the Buddhist books, it statically attracts the dust. I clean the big book with this one."

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