Definitions for vellumˈvɛl əm
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
calfskin, lambskin, kidskin, etc., treated for use as a writing surface.
a manuscript or the like on vellum.
a texture of paper or cloth resembling vellum.
(adj.)made of or resembling vellum.
bound in vellum.
Origin of vellum:
1400–50; late ME velum, velim < MF ve(e)lin of a calf. See veal , -ine1
a heavy creamy-colored paper resembling parchment
fine parchment prepared from the skin of a young animal e.g. a calf or lamb
A type of parchment paper made from the skin of a lamb, baby goat, or calf.
A writing paper of very high quality.
Origin: From velin (French vélin), from vel.
a fine kind of parchment, usually made from calfskin, and rendered clear and white, -- used as for writing upon, and for binding books
Vellum is derived from the Latin word “vitulinum” meaning "made from calf", leading to Old French “Vélin”. It is mammal skin prepared for writing or printing on, to produce single pages, scrolls, codices or books. It is a near-synonym of the word parchment, but "vellum" tends to be the term used for finer-quality parchment. Vellum is generally smooth and durable, although there are great variations depending on preparation, the quality of the skin and the type of animal used. The manufacture involves the cleaning, bleaching, stretching on a frame, and scraping of the skin with a crescent shaped knife. To create tension, scraping is alternated with wetting and drying. A final finish may be achieved by abrading the surface with pumice, and treating with a preparation of lime or chalk to make it accept writing or printing ink. Modern "paper vellum" is a quite different synthetic material, used for a variety of purposes including plans, technical drawings, and blueprints.