The word “paper” comes from the Latin word “papyrus,” which was the name of a type of paper made in ancient Egypt. Papyrus paper was made from the pith of the papyrus plant, a reed that grew along the Nile River. The pith was cut into thin strips and laid out in overlapping layers, then pressed and dried to create a smooth surface for writing.
The word “papyrus” was eventually adopted into English and other languages and came to refer to any type of paper, regardless of the material it was made from. Today, paper can be made from a variety of materials, including wood pulp, cotton, linen, and other plant fibers.