Description

    Original Leaf from a Gutenberg Bible (Ezekiel 39:7 - 40:27) also known as the Mazarin Bible and the 42-Line Bible. Printed in Mainz, Germany circa 1454-55 by Johann Gutenberg, the first book printed with the movable type and press that Gutenberg himself had developed. Without a doubt, the most important book ever printed. This new technology allowed entire books to be printed in quantity by machine quickly, in hours or days, instead of handwritten by scribes one at a time, taking months or even years. It is thought that about 180 complete copies were produced, 135 on paper, the rest on vellum. More than half of this total has been lost to the ages and there are only five complete copies currently known in the United States. An old tradition of booksellers and collectors is that, if a fine old volume is incomplete or damaged, then it is proper to sell the leaves individually. Since a complete Gutenberg Bible would cost millions (if you could find one for sale), here is an opportunity to own a leaf from this landmark of Western civilization.

    This particular leaf has been trimmed on one side approximately 0.75" into one column of text. The overall size of the leaf is 8.25" x 13". It is also closely trimmed at the top margin, but no text is affected- all 42 lines are present. There is one large rubricated drop cap at the beginning of the 40th chapter. There is some soiling, minor holes in the wide side margin, a paper clip indention, and red ink offset from the facing page. Still, a rare opportunity for some lucky bidder. The leaf is housed in a custom brown cloth covered folder. From the Henry E. Luhrs Collection.


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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2006
    20th-21st Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 952

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