A short glossary of terms common in bookselling, certainly not exhaustive and awaiting expansion as time and willingness allows.

Book Sizes - The size or format of books historically was described based on how many times a sheet of paper was folded to make the gatherings or quires. Common sizes include; Folio (folded once to create two leaves and four pages), Quarto (folded twice to create four leaves and eight pages), and Octavo (folded three times to create eight leaves and sixteen pages), and so on. Modern books are not printed in the same way but for shorthand they are often still described as folios, quartos, or octavos based on a similar size of those book formats. For clarity when cataloguing we provide the book format and metric measurements rounded up to the nearest centimetre.

Dust-jacket - The dust-jacket or dust-wrapper is the, usually paper, book cover supplied originally to protect the cloth binding of a book. Early examples tended to be plain with perhaps some text signifying what lay beneath, later dust-jackets became more complex, often illustrated and often demonstrating a recognisable house style of the publisher. 

First Edition - First Edition usually signifies the first appearance of a work as a separate production (it may have already appeared within a magazine or periodical for instance). It may go into further printings or impressions, or even further editions if it is reset or substantially revised. For clarity when cataloguing we state the edition and printing.

Textblock - The textblock is all of the pages of the book that are held together as a solid whole, either sewn or more recently glued or stapled, which will be placed into the binding or case. Once bound the three visible edges are referred to as the head, tail and fore edges, these may be left untrimmed or deckle edged, cut or trimmed to offer a uniform flat surface, or decorated by way of gilding, stains etc. If the leaves have not been slit along the folds then the textblock is unopened.