Johann Gutenberg

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Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg (circa 1398 – February 3, 1468), a German metal-worker and inventor, achieved fame for his contributions to the technology of printing during the 1440s, including a type metal alloy and oil-based inks, a mould for casting type accurately, and a new kind of printing press based on presses used in wine-making. Tradition credits him with inventing movable type in Europe, an improvement on the block printing already in use there. By combining these elements into a production system, he allowed for the rapid printing of written materials and an information explosion in Renaissance Europe.

Gutenberg was born in the German city of Mainz, as the son of a merchant named Friele Gensfleisch zur Laden, who adopted the surname "zum Gutenberg" after the name of the neighborhood into which the family had moved.

Printing

Block printing, whereby individual sheets of paper were pressed into wooden blocks with the text and illustrations carved in, was in use in Europe and East Asia long before Gutenberg. The Koreans and Chinese knew about movable metal types at the time, but due to the complex nature of the Chinese writing system, printed material was not as abundant as that of Renaissance Europe.

It is not clear whether Gutenberg knew of these existing techniques or invented them independently. Some also claim Dutchman Laurens Coster as the first European to invent movable type.

Gutenberg certainly introduced efficient methods into book production, leading to a boom in the production of texts in Europe, in large part due to the popularity of the Gutenberg Bibles, the first mass-produced work, starting on February 23, 1455.

Gutenberg was a poor businessman, and made little money from his printing system.

Gutenberg began experimenting with metal typography after he had moved from his native town of Mainz to Strassburg (then in Germany, now Strasbourg, France) around 1430. Knowing that wood-block type involved a great deal of time and expense to reproduce because it had to be hand carved, Gutenberg concluded that metal type could be reproduced much more quickly once a single mould had been fashioned. His first efforts enabled him to mass-produce indulgences, printed slips of paper sold by the Catholic Church to remit the temporal punishments in Purgatory for sins committed in this life.

Johann Fust

Bible

In 1455 Gutenberg demonstrated the power of the printing press by selling copies of a two-volume Bible (Biblia Sacra) for 300 florins each. This was the equivalent of approximately three years' wages for an average clerk, but it was significantly cheaper than a handwritten Bible, which could take a single monk 20 years to transcribe.

The one copy of the Biblia Sacra dated 1455 went to Paris and was dated by the binder.

Debt

The money Gutenberg earned at the fair was not enough to pay Fust back for his investments. Fust sued, and the court's ruling not only effectively bankrupted Gutenberg, it awarded control of the type used in his Bible, plus much of the printing equipment, to Fust. So, while Gutenberg ran a print shop until just before his death in Mainz in 1468, Fust became the first printer to publish a book with his name on it.

Gutenberg was subsidized by the Archbishop of Mainz until his death. Gutenberg was also known to spend what little money he had on alcohol, so the Archbishop arranged for him to be paid in food and lodging, instead of coin.

Gutenberg Bibles

Gutenberg Bible, Library of Congress, Washington D.C.

The Gutenberg Bibles surviving today are sometimes called the oldest surviving books printed with movable type, although the oldest surviving book was published in Korea in 1377. As of 2003, the Gutenberg Bible census includes 11 complete copies on vellum, 1 copy of the New Testament only on vellum, 48 substantially complete integral copies on paper, with another divided copy on paper, and an illiminated page (the Bagford fragment).

Other printed works

The Bible was not Gutenberg's first printed work, for he produced approximately two dozen editions of Ars Minor, a portion of Aelius Donatus's schoolbook on Latin grammar, the first edition of which is believed to have been printed between 1451 and 1452.

Legacy

Although Gutenberg was financially unsuccessful in his lifetime, his invention spread quickly, and news and books began to travel across Europe far faster than before. It fed the growing Renaissance, and since it greatly facilitated scientific publishing, was a major factor in originating the scientific revolution. Literacy also increased as a result. Gutenberg's inventions are sometimes considered the turning point from the Mediaeval Era to the Early Modern Period.

The term incunabulum refers to a western printed book produced between the first work of Gutenberg and the end of the year 1500.

There are many statues of Gutenberg in Germany, one of the more famous being a work by Thorvaldsen, in Mainz, which is also home to the Gutenberg Museum.

The Gutenberg Galaxy and Project Gutenberg commemorate Gutenberg's name.

Related articles

  • Printing
  • Typography
  • Incunabulum
  • Francysk Skaryna
  • William Caxton
  • World Almanac's Ten Most Influential People of the Second Millennium

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The Gutenberg Galaxy and Project Gutenberg commemorate Gutenberg's name. His discovery of penicillin had changed the world of modern medicines by introducing the age of useful antibiotics. There are many statues of Gutenberg in Germany, one of the more famous being a work by Thorvaldsen, in Mainz, which is also home to the Gutenberg Museum. Paul's Cathedral in London. The term incunabulum refers to a western printed book produced between the first work of Gutenberg and the end of the year 1500. He was buried as a national hero in the crypt of St. Gutenberg's inventions are sometimes considered the turning point from the Mediaeval Era to the Early Modern Period. Fleming died in 1955 of a heart attack at the age of 73.

Literacy also increased as a result. The bacteria were invisible while he painted, but when cultured made bright colours. It fed the growing Renaissance, and since it greatly facilitated scientific publishing, was a major factor in originating the scientific revolution. Fleming was admitted to the club after he made "germ paintings," in which he drew with a culture loop using spores of highly pigmented bacteria. Although Gutenberg was financially unsuccessful in his lifetime, his invention spread quickly, and news and books began to travel across Europe far faster than before. Fleming was long a member of the Chelsea Arts Club, a private club for artists of all genres, founded in 1891 at the suggestion of the painter James McNeil Whistler. The Bible was not Gutenberg's first printed work, for he produced approximately two dozen editions of Ars Minor, a portion of Aelius Donatus's schoolbook on Latin grammar, the first edition of which is believed to have been printed between 1451 and 1452. Florey was later given the higher honour of a peerage for his monumental work in making penicillin available to the public and saving millions of lives in World War II.

As of 2003, the Gutenberg Bible census includes 11 complete copies on vellum, 1 copy of the New Testament only on vellum, 48 substantially complete integral copies on paper, with another divided copy on paper, and an illiminated page (the Bagford fragment). Fleming, Florey, and Chain were the joint recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1945. The Gutenberg Bibles surviving today are sometimes called the oldest surviving books printed with movable type, although the oldest surviving book was published in Korea in 1377. For his achievements, Fleming was knighted in 1944. Gutenberg was also known to spend what little money he had on alcohol, so the Archbishop arranged for him to be paid in food and lodging, instead of coin. Through their work, the drug was available for mass distribution during World War II. Gutenberg was subsidized by the Archbishop of Mainz until his death. It was left to two other scientists, Howard Florey and Ernst Boris Chain, to develop a method of purifying penicillin to an effective form.

So, while Gutenberg ran a print shop until just before his death in Mainz in 1468, Fust became the first printer to publish a book with his name on it. Fleming therefore did not pursue the subject further. Fust sued, and the court's ruling not only effectively bankrupted Gutenberg, it awarded control of the type used in his Bible, plus much of the printing equipment, to Fust. Furthermore, his initial paper was not well received in the medical community. The money Gutenberg earned at the fair was not enough to pay Fust back for his investments. Fleming's impression was that, because of the problem of producing the drug in quantity and because its action seemed slow, it would not be an important resource for treating infection. The one copy of the Biblia Sacra dated 1455 went to Paris and was dated by the binder. Fleming worked with the mould for some time, but refining and growing it was a difficult process better suited to chemists.

This was the equivalent of approximately three years' wages for an average clerk, but it was significantly cheaper than a handwritten Bible, which could take a single monk 20 years to transcribe. Fleming issued a publication about penicillin in the British Journal of Experimental Pathology in 1929. In 1455 Gutenberg demonstrated the power of the printing press by selling copies of a two-volume Bible (Biblia Sacra) for 300 florins each. The importance was immediately recognized, however the discovery was still underestimated. His first efforts enabled him to mass-produce indulgences, printed slips of paper sold by the Catholic Church to remit the temporal punishments in Purgatory for sins committed in this life. Lysis is the breakdown of cells, and in this case, it was lysis of potentially harmful bacteria. Knowing that wood-block type involved a great deal of time and expense to reproduce because it had to be hand carved, Gutenberg concluded that metal type could be reproduced much more quickly once a single mould had been fashioned. Fleming inspected the Petri dish further and found that the bacterial colonies around the fungus were transparent because their cells were lysing.

Gutenberg began experimenting with metal typography after he had moved from his native town of Mainz to Strassburg (then in Germany, now Strasbourg, France) around 1430. He inspected each specimen before discarding it and noticed an interesting fungal colony had grown as a contaminant on one of the agar plates streaked with the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. Gutenberg was a poor businessman, and made little money from his printing system. In September 1928, he was sorting through the many idle experiments strewn about his lab. Gutenberg certainly introduced efficient methods into book production, leading to a boom in the production of texts in Europe, in large part due to the popularity of the Gutenberg Bibles, the first mass-produced work, starting on February 23, 1455. Fleming's labs were usually in disarray, which turned out to be to his advantage. Some also claim Dutchman Laurens Coster as the first European to invent movable type. A few days later, it was noted that bacteria where the mucus had fallen had been destroyed.

It is not clear whether Gutenberg knew of these existing techniques or invented them independently. The first, lysozyme, was discovered after Fleming sneezed into a bacterium-laced Petri dish. The Koreans and Chinese knew about movable metal types at the time, but due to the complex nature of the Chinese writing system, printed material was not as abundant as that of Renaissance Europe. Both of Fleming's discoveries happened entirely by accident during the 1920s. Block printing, whereby individual sheets of paper were pressed into wooden blocks with the text and illustrations carved in, was in use in Europe and East Asia long before Gutenberg. Mary's after the war with renewed energy in searching for an improved antiseptic. . Being exposed to the horrific medical infections by the dying soldiers, he returned to St.

Gutenberg was born in the German city of Mainz, as the son of a merchant named Friele Gensfleisch zur Laden, who adopted the surname "zum Gutenberg" after the name of the neighborhood into which the family had moved. He participated in a battlefield hospital with many of his colleagues in the fronts of France. By combining these elements into a production system, he allowed for the rapid printing of written materials and an information explosion in Renaissance Europe. He later attended St Mary's Hospital medical school in London until World War I broke out. Tradition credits him with inventing movable type in Europe, an improvement on the block printing already in use there. Fleming was born on a farm at Lochfield near Darvel in East Ayrshire, Scotland and was schooled for two years at the Academy in Kilmarnock. Johannes Gensfleisch zur Laden zum Gutenberg (circa 1398 – February 3, 1468), a German metal-worker and inventor, achieved fame for his contributions to the technology of printing during the 1440s, including a type metal alloy and oil-based inks, a mould for casting type accurately, and a new kind of printing press based on presses used in wine-making. Sir Alexander Fleming (August 6, 1881 – March 11, 1955) discovered the antibiotic substance lysozyme and isolated the antibiotic substance penicillin from the fungus Penicillium notatum, for which he shared a Nobel Prize.

World Almanac's Ten Most Influential People of the Second Millennium. William Caxton. Francysk Skaryna. Incunabulum.

Typography. Printing.

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