Item #: SCP-174
Object Class: Euclid
Special Containment Procedures: All objects are kept in a specially built repository underneath Site 19. Objects are kept in precise order and are only to be handled by trained personnel. Objects are numbered and their individual shelves are marked with the area of the dictionary they contain. Object is allowed to update for a few minutes every week, then all objects are re-checked and shelves re-marked. Reading of the objects is allowed (with proper authorization) in the reading chamber, equipped with recording equipment and magnification systems.
All objects are under constant video surveillance and armed guard. Regardless of authorization, no object is to be removed from its shelf for more than 6 hours at any time, failure to abide by these rules may result in summary termination.
Possession of any unauthorized paper or paper-like substance in the vicinity of SCP-174 is punishable by immediate termination.
Description: Object originally appeared to be a Oxford English Dictionary (Compact Edition), approximately 44 by 28 by 9 centimetres. Object “grew” to fill most of a small library, and now consists of 6,324 books (1 original, 5833 uncontrolled offspring, and 490 SCP cultivated). All share the properties of the original and are considered extremely valuable to our organisation.
Object’s special properties are as follows:
Both the Object and offspring objects are indestructible.
The object holds entries on all possible subjects, persons and words known to humankind. Entries are in clean, concise modern British English.
Object self-updates constantly whenever the front cover is opened and the objects are not concentrated upon.
Pages being concentrated on by an outside reader seem to “stabilize”; allowing text to be read and recorded without shrinkage or being moved to another page. Paradoxically, entries being concentrated on seem to expand and detail themselves massively after concentration has ended.
Print appears to shrink as page space becomes insufficient for the vast volume of text that appears on the object each day. Print continues to shrink, eventually into unreadability. Shrinkage should be allowed to continue until text size reaches the danger area (0.000023 pt. per character), beyond which text cannot be read with modern microscope technology.
Object can replicate under controlled conditions. When text shrinkage reaches the danger area, a supervised maintenance team is to collect a specially provided “blank book” (a blank book, of approximately the same size as the original object and printed on the same paper), remove it from its plastic covering and place it on the indicated shelf (adjacent to the previous volume). Object then copies itself into the new book and “resets” its text size to the available space.