The European printing revolution began in Germany in 1448 when goldsmith Johannes Gutenberg began casting letters in metal.
The Printing Press Revolutionized the Spread of Information
Published: October 8, 2020
Narrator: The printing revolution began in the German town of Mainz, in 1448, when Johannes Gutenberg, a goldsmith by trade, began casting the letters of the Latin alphabet in metal.
Joost Depuydt: Gutenberg was looking for a way to produce multiple copies of the same text in a much faster way than scribes could copy texts in the manuscript period.
Narrator: Gutenberg’s idea was to speed up the process of putting words on a page by replacing the scribe with a machine. The secret of Gutenberg’s printing press was his ability to mass produce multiple copies in metal of each individual letter. And in this he had a hidden advantage, the nature of the Latin alphabet.
Brody Neuenschwander: The letters of the Latin alphabet are really very simple shapes, and when you write them in the way they would have been written at the time printing was invented, all the letters are very clearly separate. This is a modular way of writing, and, in fact, if I want to make little blocks of metal with them, no problem, because I’m already, I’m already there, basically. The design has already happened. These simple block-like letters can become blocks of metal and can be printed.
Martin De La Fouchardière
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY
ANIMATION AND GRAPHICS
Caroline Le Hello
Davide Ribeiro Da Silva
Tom De Pauw
Clara Della Torre
Romain Colonna d’Istria
Magdy El Rashidy
Zhuang Yimin, Flying Sparrow Films Co. Ltd
Penny Dan Xu
Jo De Baerdemaeker
Dai Yuexuan Calligraphy Store, China
Hast Imam Library Museum, Uzbekistan
Leiden University, Netherlands
Meros Paper Mill, Uzbekistan
Mo Fan Bookshop, China
Municipal Archive of Bruges, Belgium
Ulugh Beg Astronomical Observatory, Uzbekistan
Ulugh Beg Madrassa, Uzbekistan
William Cowley Parchment Makers, UK
National Association of Electronic Mass Media, Uzbekistan
Foreign Affairs Office of the People’s Government of Beijing Municipality, China
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