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Stationery

Stationery is a general name given to paper and office supplies such as envelopes, notepads, pens, pencils, erasers, paper clips, staples, etc. The term "stationery" is frequently used to refer more specifically to paper used for written correspondence, usually decorated or personalized with matching envelopes. Originally the term "stationery" referred to all products sold by a stationer, whose name indicates that his book shop was on a fixed spot, usually near a university, and permanent, while medieval trading was mainly ambulant, by peddlers (including chapmen, who sold books) and others (such as farmers and craftsmen) at non-permanent markets such as fairs. It was a special of term used between the 13th and 15th centuries in the Manuscript culture.
  • By extension the term has been applied to decorative backgrounds that may be attached to E-mail correspondence (though this has never found favour) or to describe templates typically used by home users in desktop publishing software to make, for example, party invitations.
  • The word is sometimes confused with the homophone adjective stationary, meaning "not moving", which is also derived from Latin statio. Mnemonics are "stationery has an e for envelope" pen and pencils; and "stationers" sell "stationery".
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Stationery