Portrait: Johannes Gutenberg, inventor of the Printing Press

Wednesday, 23 January 2019 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: Portrait

Gutenberg Bible - Lenox Copy - New York Public Library © flickr.com - NYC Wanderer (Kevin Eng)/cc-by-sa-2.0

Gutenberg Bible – Lenox Copy – New York Public Library © flickr.com – NYC Wanderer (Kevin Eng)/cc-by-sa-2.0

Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg was a German blacksmith, goldsmith, inventor, printer, and publisher who introduced printing to Europe with the printing press. His introduction of mechanical movable type printing to Europe started the Printing Revolution and is regarded as a milestone of the second millennium, ushering in the modern period of human history. It played a key role in the development of the Renaissance, Reformation, the Age of Enlightenment, and the scientific revolution and laid the material basis for the modern knowledge-based economy and the spread of learning to the masses.

Gutenberg in 1439 was the first European to use movable type. Among his many contributions to printing are: the invention of a process for mass-producing movable type; the use of oil-based ink for printing books; mechanical movable type; and the use of a wooden printing press similar to the agricultural screw presses of the period. His truly epochal invention was the combination of these elements into a practical system that allowed the mass production of printed books and was economically viable for printers and readers alike. Gutenberg’s method for making type is traditionally considered to have included a type metal alloy and a hand mould for casting type. The alloy was a mixture of lead, tin, and antimony that melted at a relatively low temperature for faster and more economical casting, cast well, and created a durable type.

Gutenberg-Museum Mainz © Pedelecs/cc-by-sa-3.0 Gutenberg Monument on Gutenberg Square with the Mainz Cathedral in the background © Staudacher/cc-by-sa-2.0-de Gutenberg statue at Gutenberg-Museum © Andreas Praefcke/cc-by-4.0 Gutenberg-Museum Mainz © Amras wi Gutenberg Bible - Lenox Copy - New York Public Library © flickr.com - NYC Wanderer (Kevin Eng)/cc-by-sa-2.0
<
>
Gutenberg Monument on Gutenberg Square with the Mainz Cathedral in the background © Staudacher/cc-by-sa-2.0-de
In Renaissance Europe, the arrival of mechanical movable type printing introduced the era of mass communication which permanently altered the structure of society. The relatively unrestricted circulation of information—including revolutionary ideas—transcended borders, captured the masses in the Reformation and threatened the power of political and religious authorities; the sharp increase in literacy broke the monopoly of the literate elite on education and learning and bolstered the emerging middle class. Across Europe, the increasing cultural self-awareness of its people led to the rise of proto-nationalism, accelerated by the flowering of the European vernacular languages to the detriment of Latin‘s status as lingua franca. In the 19th century, the replacement of the hand-operated Gutenberg-style press by steam-powered rotary presses allowed printing on an industrial scale, while Western-style printing was adopted all over the world, becoming practically the sole medium for modern bulk printing.

The use of movable type was a marked improvement on the handwritten manuscript, which was the existing method of book production in Europe, and upon woodblock printing, and revolutionized European book-making. Gutenberg’s printing technology spread rapidly throughout Europe and later the world. His major work, the Gutenberg Bible (also known as the 42-line Bible), has been acclaimed for its high aesthetic and technical quality.

Read more on Gutenberg Museum Mainz and Wikipedia Johannes Gutenberg (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




Recommended posts:

Share this post: (Please note data protection regulations before using buttons)

Meaux in the Brie region

Meaux in the Brie region

[caption id="attachment_160979" align="aligncenter" width="590"] River boats in the foreground and St. Stephen's Cathedral in the background © Toine77/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Meaux is a commune in the Seine-et-Marne department in the Île-de-France region in the metropolitan area of Paris. It is located 41.1 km (25.5 mi) east-northeast from the center of Paris. With a population of 51,400 inhabitants, Meaux is the second most populated city in the Seine-et-Marne department after Chelles with 53,000 inhabitants. ...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

Theme Week Bangladesh - Chittagong

Theme Week Bangladesh - Chittagong

[caption id="attachment_201072" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Ethnological Museum of Chittagong © Tanvir87bd/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Chittagong, officially known as Chattogram, is a major coastal city and financial centre in southeastern Bangladesh. The city has a population of more than 2.5 million while the metropolitan area had a population of 4,009,423 in 2011, making it the second-largest city in the country. It is the capital of an eponymous District and Division. The city is located on the banks of the ...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

Theme Week Netherlands - Delft, the princely city

Theme Week Netherlands - Delft, the princely city

[caption id="attachment_160501" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Central Market Square with Town Hall © Herebedug[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Delft is a city and municipality in the province of South Holland (Zuid-Holland), the Netherlands. It is located in between Rotterdam and The Hague. Delft is primarily known for its typically Dutch town centre (with canals); also for the painter Vermeer, Delft Blue pottery (Delftware), the Delft University of Technology, and its association with the Dutch royal family, the House of Orange-N...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

Downing Street in Westminster

Downing Street in Westminster

[caption id="attachment_163132" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Drow male/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Downing Street in London has for more than three hundred years housed the official residences of two of the most senior British Cabinet ministers: the First Lord of the Treasury, an office now synonymous with that of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom; and the Second Lord of the Treasury, an office held by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. The Prime Minister's official residence is 10 Downing Street; the Chancell...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

The SeaDream I and II

The SeaDream I and II

[caption id="attachment_152949" align="aligncenter" width="590"] SeaDream II in Pula © Orlovic[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"] "It's yachting, not cruising!" SeaDream’s twin, luxury mega-yachts "SeaDream I" and "SeaDream II" were designed as prototypes for the ultra-luxury yachting experience. Teak decks, inviting seating and lounging areas with plenty of room to stroll or simply relax and watch the world go by with your favorite libation. With all the comforts of home and more, SeaDream yachts reflect a passion for style, quali...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

2017 Formula One season

2017 Formula One season

[caption id="attachment_164830" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Formula 1 @ Carter Wong Design[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Formula One (officially the FIA Formula One World Championship) is the highest class of single-seat auto racing that is sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). The FIA Formula One World Championship has been the premier form of racing since the inaugural season in 1950, although other Formula One races were regularly held until 1983. The formula, designated in the name, refers to ...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

The museum ship Falls of Clyde

The museum ship Falls of Clyde

[caption id="attachment_172140" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Alexandre/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Falls of Clyde is the last surviving iron-hulled, four-masted full-rigged ship, and the only remaining sail-driven oil tanker. Designated a U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1973, and National Historic Landmark in 1989, she is now a museum ship in Honolulu, but her condition has deteriorated. She is currently not open to the public. In September 2008, ownership was transferred to a new nonprofit organiz...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

Delray Beach in Florida, America's Most Fun Small Town

Delray Beach in Florida, America's Most Fun Small Town

[caption id="attachment_192632" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Delray Beach © D Ramey Logan/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Delray Beach is a coastal city in Palm Beach County, Florida, United States. The population of Delray Beach is estimated at 67,000. Delray Beach is a principal city of the Miami metropolitan area, which is home to an estimated 6.2 million people. The city's eastern boundary includes 3 miles (4.8 km) of beachfront along the Atlantic Ocean. Delray Beach is one of South Florida's most popular beach d...

[ read more/mehr lesen ]

Return to Top ▲Return to Top ▲
© Taiwankengo/cc-by-sa-4.0
Theme Week Taiwan – Keelung

Keelung, officially known as Keelung City, is a major port city situated in the northeastern part of Taiwan. It borders...

Presidential Office Building in Taipei © Jiang
Theme Week Taiwan

Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a state in East Asia. Its neighbors include the People's Republic of...

Yaowarat Road, Bangkok's Chinatown at night © flickr.com - Ninara/cc-by-2.0
Bangkok, capital of Thailand

Bangkok is the capital and most populous city of Thailand. The city occupies 1,568.7 square kilometres (605.7 sq mi) in...

Schließen