|The Gutenberg Revolution
How Printing Changed The Course of History
|In 1450, all of Europe’s books were hand copied and amounted to only a few thousand. By 1500 they were printed, and numbered in their millions. Johann Gutenberg’s invention of printing with movable type had caused a revolution.
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.