Jump to navigation Jump to search


A general term used for Cellulose nitrate formulated with less than 12.5% nitrogen. At this low nitrogen concentration, it was not explosive. Pyroxylin was most often used in lacquer formulations, generically named Collodion. At the London Exposition in 1852, Alexander Parkes first exhibited a cellulose nitrate lacquer he called Parkesine . He later patented his production process in 1855. It was used for small objects, such as jewelry, buttons, fountain pens, and brush handles. The Parkesine Company failed after a few years and was acquired by the British Xylonite company in 1875, which produced pyroxylin.

Synonyms and Related Terms

cellulose nitrate; collodion; Parkesine; celluloid; loalin; French ivory; pyralin cellulose nitrate; collodion; Parkesine; loalin; French ivory; pyralin; piroxilina (Esp.);

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 171
  • Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  • History of Plastics: (exhibited at 1852 London exposition, patented in 1856)