The 1885 engraving
of the Flapping Bird
||The history of
paperfolding is a fascinating one.
This page links to a brief Timeline
of Origami History and other pages collecting
together more detailed historical information about some
traditional designs, early manuscripts and books.
is also a bibliography of the published designs
of Robert E Neale.
objects made of paper are ephemeral and the
record we have of them at an early date relies
largely on their chance survival or appearance in
books, fabrics, drawings and paintings. It is
likely that many paperfolding designs are much
older than the first evidence for their
existence. Unfortunately, of course, we cannot
know, even approximately, how much older they
might actually be.
While I have long been
interested in origami history there are many
paperfolders who know much more about the subject
than I do and these notes should be seen as a
starting point for understanding and research and
not as a comprehensive guide. I have, however,
tried to make them as accurate as possible by
basing them on verifiable sources rather than
myth or imagination.
If you find any errors or
inaccuracies in these notes or are aware of
important sources I have missed please let me