Landmark exhibition at Princeton University Library: Gutenberg & After: Europe's Earliest Printers 1450-1470
The 62 exhibited items include the Scheide Library’s Gutenberg Bible and an unprecedented assemblage of unique or historically noteworthy specimens from the first two decades of European typography, including the earliest dated specimen of European printing; the earliest dated book printed in Europe; the first law book printed in Europe; the first books printed outside of Mainz, first editions of important Classical and vernacular works; rarely seen early woodcuts; and the first books or broadsides printed in Italy, France, the Netherlands, and Austria. Many of the selections are distinguished by their typographic innovations, important evidentiary contexts, or brilliant illumination.
"The Scheide Library holds a wide range of unique and nearly unique early printings," said Scheide Librarian and exhibition curator Paul Needham. "But when we were considering how to present the wealth of the Scheide bequest, it occurred to us that the best way would be not simply to rely exclusively on its holdings, but to deepen and enrich the exhibition with a focused selection of related treasures from other libraries."
"This is a historic exhibition, because it brings so much together in America that hasn't been seen before," said Eric White, Curator of Rare Books and also an exhibition curator. "There are both world-famous and important but less-familiar books. Combined, they tell the story of the earliest European printing in a way that hasn't been attempted before."
Lenders to the exhibition include Cambridge University Library, the John Rylands Library of the University of Manchester, the Devonshire Collections in Chatsworth House, Columbia University Library, the Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, the Morgan Library & Museum, New York Public Library, the Newberry Library, and the Bridwell Library of Southern Methodist University. Most of the 20 loaned items have not been exhibited outside of their home institutions during the past half century.
Open daily through December 15, from 12 noon to 6pm in the Ellen and Leonard Milberg Gallery in Firestone Library (One Washington Road, Princeton, NJ 08544). Admission is free.
A web version of the exhibition, enhanced with complete digitizations of all of the Princeton items, is available at https://dpul.princeton.edu/gutenberg .
For all information about the exhibition, please visit the website here.