Siberian Man Claims to Have Created the World’s Smallest Book

The book will be submitted to the Guinness World Records.

March 1, 2016, 10:53 AM
PHOTO: A Siberian man has created what he says is the smallest book in the world.
A Siberian man has created what he says is the smallest book in the world.
Vladimir Aniskin

— -- A Siberian man has created what he says is the smallest book in the world.

The micro-book consists of several pages, each measuring only very tiny fractions of a millimeter: the precise size of the pages is 70 by 90 micrometers or 0.07 by 0.09 millimeters — too small to be read by the naked human eye. Made by gluing white paint to extremely thin film, the pages are hung from a tiny ring binder that allows them to be turned. The whole construction rests on a horizontal sliver of a poppy seed.

The book was created by Vladimir M. Aniskin, a so-called "micro-miniaturist" from the city of Novosibirsk, about 2,000 miles from Moscow. Aniskin, who is known in Russia for his tiny productions and has a gallery in St. Petersburg, said it had taken him several years to develop the technology needed to produce the book, and then a month to actually make it. Aniskin said that the book was made by hand, without any remote-controlled tools.

There are two versions of the book, one listing the names of several "micro miniaturists" and another giving the Russian alphabet. The letters are so small that you would need an electron microscope to read them.

Asked why he had made the book, Aniskin told ABC News, “I’m a micro-miniaturist, I make everything small.” He added that the book had been a goal of his.

Aniskin plans to submit the book to the Guinness World Records next week and expects it will be ruled the smallest book ever made.

The current Guinness World Record holder for the world’s smallest reproduction of a printed book is “Teeny Ted from Turnip Town,” a children’s story etched using an ion beam onto pure crystalline silicon by Simon Frazer University in Canada. It measures 70 by 100 micrometers, marginally larger than Aniskin’s. A Japanese printing house has also said it has produced the smallest original work, with pages only 75 micrometers wide.

Before these, another Russian book had claimed to hold the record: a 30-page copy of an Anton Chekhov short story, "Chameleon," also produced in Siberia and measuring 0.9 by 0.9 millimeters.

The world’s smallest newspaper, listed in the Guinness World Records, is much larger, at 18.27 millimeters wide. The world’s smallest tailored suit is 19.7 centimeters long in the jacket, 35.5 centimeters for the trousers.

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