Composition book

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A composition book sporting the common black-and-white pattern.

A composition book is one of a type of stock-bound notebook commonly used by writers and students in the United States. Although available in several colors, the original marbled black-and-white cover, with its generic label on the front, is the most common.


The papers in a composition book often have the baseline and cap line line printed in blue to aid writing, with a (sometimes red) vertical line for a margin on the left hand of every page. Traditionally, the inside back cover contains a table of the weights and measures of the English (imperial) system printed for reference; however, this feature has become less common in countries that have adopted the metric system. Sometimes a multiplication table, or grammar or punctuation tips, are also found on the inside back cover. The inside front cover typically has a place to put one's weekly class schedule.

Composition books are traditionally bound through the fold—that is, the pages are folded, and stitched vertically along the fold. This makes them significantly more durable than loose leaf pads or spiral notebooks.

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