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'The best book about the origin of books you could read. It is clear, engaging, fast-paced and authoritative' Stephen Fry

In 1450, all Europe's books were handcopied and amounted to only a few thousand. By 1500 they were printed, and numbered in their millions. The invention of one man - Johann Gutenberg - had caused a revolution. Printing by movable type was a discovery waiting to happen.

Born in 1400 in Mainz, Germany, Gutenberg struggled against a background of plague and religious upheaval to bring his remarkable invention to light. His story is full of paradox: his ambition was to reunite all Christendom, but his invention shattered it; he aimed to make a fortune, but was cruelly denied the fruits of his life's work. Yet history remembers him as a visionary; his discovery marks the beginning of the modern world.

Reviews

The Gutenberg Revolution is the best book about the origin of books you could read. It is clear, engaging, fast-paced and authoritative.

Stephen Fry

Extremely erudite and enormously enthusiastic

Guardian

Vivid . . . engaging, detailed and highly readable . . . a window on an extraordinary display of consummate skill and creative genius

New Scientist

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Formats & editions

  • EBook

    9781409045526

    November 1, 2010

    Transworld Digital

    304 pages

    Online retailers

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  • Paperback

    9780553819663

    October 1, 2009

    Bantam

    304 pages

    RRP $29.99

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