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13. Auditing the First 50 years of Printing History
In Konrad Haebler's Typenrepertorium der Wiegendrucke, 1905, he reported on the styles and amounts of type used in the first 50 years of printing.
Gothic type accounts for 79% of all types used, while Roman types represents around 19%. Besides these two major founts, Greek, Hebrew ... were created... Some 1,200 Gothic type founts were used in both Italy and Germany, and some 700 Gothic type founts in France. Most of Roman types were used by Italian printers, while only a small number of German, French and Spanish printers used Roman type. Printers in England and the Netherlands seldom or never used Roman type.’Äù Excerpt from the Japanese National Diet Library Dawn of Western Printing.
14. Printing Technology Caused Societal Change
Some of these first printers were artisans, while others were just people who saw an opportunity for a quick lira/franc/pound. The modern view of a classical era in which craftsmanship predominated appears unjustified to scholars: there has always been fine craft, crass commercialism, and work that combines both.’Äù
Some Recorded Printer Casualties
Antoine Augereau, Parisian printer and type designer, reputedly the teacher of Garamond, hanged and burned on Christmas Eve, 1534, on (supposedly trumped up) charges of printing heretical placards.
Etienne Dolet, printer of Lyon and Paris, burned at the stake on August 3, 1546, in Paris, on charges of blasphemy, sedition, and selling prohibited books.
Martin l’ÄôHomme, hanged in 1560 for printing a pamphlet against a Cardinal.