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The Gutenberg Press Essay

1661 words - 7 pages

Gutenberg’s printing press was one of the most important inventions of the renaissance, as it has had a major impact on both the Renaissance and todays world of printing. The Gutenberg Press, impacted the renaissance by, making books and information easier and cheaper to reproduce and print, spreading more information easier and faster to vast audiences eager for new information, helping advance science and technology, and also by helping the economy grow stronger through creating new industries and the constant purchasing of books.

In 1436 Johannes Gutenberg invented the Printing Press, which had a major impact on both the Renaissance and printing today, however there other movable type systems invented before Gutenberg’s Printing Press. There are a few inventors of printing systems before Gutenberg, the first being an inventor in China, the second being a Dutchman, and the third being inventor in Korea that developed a printing system around the 12th century. In 1041 Pi Sheng invented movable clay type in China, which is the first known printing system, however the first known printed book is thought to be Diamond Sutra, which was printed in China, in 868 CE. The movable type system invented in China never succeeded, as it was unmanageable, as the Chinese language is made up of many characters. Although Diamond Sutra is known to be the first printed book, it is thought that book printing may have occurred well before this date. Later in the 13th century paper money and playing cards, from China reached Europe, the items were block printed. The block printing method was quite expensive and time consuming, as each word, phrase, and picture was carved onto a separate block. Woodblock printing remained the standard printing method, until the end of the 19th century, in China. Overall there were a few different print systems invented before the printing press, however none of them succeeded as well as Gutenberg’s Printing Press.

During the Renaissance, there was a need for written records, for both businesses and governments; therefor there was a need for a way to reproduce writing in a faster, cheaper and more efficient way. As a result of this need, Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in 1436, along with Johannes Fust and Peter Schöffer, however Gutenberg is better known for the invention of the printing press, or the Gutenberg Press. Gutenberg’s first printing press had replaceable moveable wooden letters, which was later replaced by metal letters. The first printing press, was completed in 1440, four years after it was first invented. By 1482, there were a total of 100 printing presses in Western Europe: fifty in Italy, thirty in Germany, nine in France, eight in Spain and Holland, and four in England. The Gutenberg Press remained the standard method for printing until the 20th century. The Gutenberg Press is known for creating a revolution in the production of books, and for also for initiating rapid development in science, art...

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