Assuming you captured these images in raw mode with whatever camera you used, it would likely be a lot better if you would post your raw exposures rather than JPEGs saved from an incompletely blended stitching job.
Oh, and at least some of it appears to be ink that transferred to the opposite page, vs. etched-out.
I do not think I can post the full-size RAW files anywhere where the public can access them. Suggestions?
To add, the "incompletely blended stitching job" is a result of subtle changes to lighting that vary frame to frame. I'm less worried about how the images look in their current, original (unedited and unblended) stitched state and more concerned with what I can do next.
In no portion of theses images does the ink transfer from the next page. It is either remnant from ink that has been etched out -or- it is remnant from ink that has been etched out and was later written over. I know this with 100% certainty.
It is the subtle, remnant ink that I need to interpret.
I thought that because from what enhancement I did the remnant text seems slanted the wrong way, and flipped horizontally it looks more natural. Is it possible the stitched result was flipped horizontally after you scanned it? Flipped optically by a microscope maybe? If not, I don't see how you can be absolutely sure some ink wasn't transferred from another document at some time in the past.
I don't have a link ready-made to a file sharing site, but I'm sure some exist that can temporarily host a few hundred megabytes of raw files. Do you have Photoshop CC? Seems to me that provides some gigabytes of online storage. Or there's Microsoft SkyDrive (er, now called OneDrive I think). The raw files are important because there's far more information in a raw file than in an 8 bit JPEG.
It might also be helpful to have a less highly magnified overview of the document and maybe a nearby line of actual text in the author's hand.
Thank you for your response.
The image was shot with the Canon 6D in conjunction with our Macropod photomacrography system and the images are shown as they exist on the page.
I work closely with the researcher who needs to interpret this journal and I know that the faded ink has been neither transferred from the next page -or- stamped from the previous for two reasons.
1) The images are very high in resolution. If you download the full size image, you can see down the fibers in the paper. The ink is only shown on the surface of the fibers (this indicates a stamp as you suggest).
2) It is not a stamp or a transfer because we can look at what is written on the previous and following pages and they do not match the writing. We also see the words slanted as they should be.
This author is notorious for etching out ink. He even describes his technique in century old texts in Cambridge. He used a tool made of graded glass and and a pick in conjunction with minor amounts of a solution. However, some remnant ink still exists where it has been removed. Furthermore, he only removed words that contain critical information such as names. In some cases, there is also a small imprint superimposed onto the marks from the etching. However, 200 years of rebound was enough to make this extremely difficult to see.
If you can convince yourself that the subtle ink splotches are, in fact, words that have been removed from the page that is gown (as we have convinced ourselves over the past year after hours of examination) you will help us achieve our goal.
I've used techniques such as color-inversion, leveling, extreme contrast, but I have limited photoshop knowledge about how to best analyze and process these images in order to achieve the solution.
I thank you for your continued help and I would be very happy to see what you can ultimately deduce.