You are here: Book history
Sunday, July 05, 2020

Metallbuch sHE
Metallbuch sHE


Much lust for life with your first metal book

Book, a written or printed work, which consists of several sheets that are connected to an entireness. The term comes from beech, on whose crust in Germany the first one was written. In the broader sense it is used also used for antique scolls.

The forerunners of the book were burned clay/tone boards, on which the Sumerians worked on with a stylus. The oldest writing certifications (4./3. millenium before Christ) originate from the city Uruk, 240 kilometers southwest of Bagdad. It acted around economics and legal texts. The cuneiform script spread in the process for the next thousands of years. Also the Assyrians and Babylonians, exactly the same as the Elamer, Hethiter, Hurriter and the Urartäer availed themselves gladly of this tools. Only in the 1st century before Christ cuneiform script was replaced by the simpler system of the Aramäer. Other media were leaves of plam trees (in India), beech, leathers and bamboo (in China). The papyrus of the old Egyptians, Greeks and Romans represent a further step toward book development. Papyrus roles consisted of a sheet, which was wound around a wood or an ivory staff (Omphalos) (scrolls). The roles were made of rammed mark of the papyrus growing in the Nile delta. On one side the described sheet was piece by piece rolled up during the reading. The longest received papyrus role with a length of 40.5 meters stores in the British museum in London. In the 4th century B.C. long scrolls were divided into several shorter roles of about ten m and kept together in a container. Since the 7th century B.C. papyrus was used also in Greece.

Scrolls were often additionally put into a covering hit and with a out-hanging title strip provided, which indicated the name of the author and the work. Writers multiplied the works, by copying collecting mains. Athens, Alexandria and Rome were important centers (extremely expensive and complex) of scroll production. Prominent commercial town with papyrus was the old-Syrian Byblos. Of it the Greeks derived biblion = book, and our Bible, the book of the books. Because of the durability lacking of the papyrus roles as well as because of library fires a majority of the literature of this time was lost irreparably. In the 3rd and 4th century the Pergament (thin ungegerbte sheep, calf and goat skin) became generally accepted as description off, since it was substantially more durable. Above all Persians and Hebräens, papyrus was unknown to others, that had used scrolls from Pergament for centuries. The Pergamentproduction started in the 2nd century B.C. during the time of king Eumenes II. of Pergamon. Afterwards this material found its way to frequent use.

The Codex referring to first Roman books in form of a rectangular Codex (Latin: ) 84-86 B.C. are trunk, chunk in a text of Martial from the years. These first Roman attempts had little success but where however obviously granted: The convention, strengthened by the Greek influence on the Roman culture, required the form of the scroll for books as tidy publication form. Only in the 3rd Jh. A.D. the Kodex is gradually accepted. Probably the Christianity helped: The archaeological text finds made from Egypt show that Christian texts from the beginning almost exclusively were written in Kodexform (Papyruskodex). This is valid particularly for the texts of the Christian Bible, which crystallize in the 2nd century gradually. Why the Christianity decided for the Kodex, remains to a large extent in the dark. Thus, Jewish practice is for example assumed to record individual insulating decisions or rabbinian theorems on boards could to the fact have led that the verbal teachings Jesu were finally held in Kodexform (Papyruskodex). The Kodex gave the Christians besides the possibility to define their writings both from those of the Jews and those of the pagans.

The Codex was a booklet, which consisted of two or more wooden boards held together with hinges, rings or belts and covered with wax. These could be described with a stylus and were again usable after smoothing the surface. Later the Codex developed then to a book, which consisted of many papyrus leaves. These were folded, superimposed, sewn together in the center and fastened with leather belts to wooden single volume covers. The columns of the Codex were larger than those the scroll, which became reciprocally descriptive. The Codex facilitated it for the reader to regain certain passages in the text. As particularly useful the Codex proved with the Christian Liturgie. For the 4th century texts were transferred by roles to Codices. Which did not become to transfer becuase it was judged unimportant and therefore, was lost. In the Middle Ages many Codices in monasteries with ornamentations and pictures were illustrated. Since Pergament was very expensive, the texts of the Codices were often extinguished and overwritten. Medieval books In the early Middle Ages books were written mainly by clergyman for theologians or for rulers, who gave these in order. It concerned usually Bible excerpts, comments, liturgical or also ancient texts. The books often came from man tha copied them and wokred in the Scriptorium (Latin: Office). At first only in capital letters one wrote: One had taken over this convention from the scrolls. As consequence of the karolingian Renaissance, which was initiated of Karl the large one, the writers used also small letter (Minuskeln) in their texts, which were written in clear, from each other defined type characters. The karolingische writing inspired later the Typographs of the Renaissance. Many medieval books were decorated with golden and colored ornaments, which marked the beginning of a new text paragraph, the text illustrated or as edge decorations. An example of a particularly rich Ornamentierung is the Book of Kells, which developed between the 8th and 9th century. Finedetailed miniature scenes from the everyday life life the hourly book Trés of riches contains the heures duke Jean von Berry, that the Netherlands burgundian brothers of Limburg at the beginning 15. Century made. That book of the Middle Ages consisted of wooden covers, which were strengthened with metal bands often and were held together by latches. Often the cover was covered and sometimes richly with gold and silver work, enamel and jewels decorated with leather.  The eastern forerunners of the book were wood or bamboo boards, which was held together with a cord. Also there was strips of silk or paper, that from felted flax, cotton or hemp fibers existed and was invented from the Chinese around 100 A.D.  First on one side described strips were wound as scrolls around a staff, folded later then and sewn togheter at a page.

Printing with a carved wood block was invented in the 6th century A.D. in China. The first in this way printed book originated in about 868. A further religious text was made 972. To print with re-usable blocks was a by far more effective method of the reproduction than the copy my handwriting. In the 11th century the Chinese invented also the printing with mobile type characters, which could be arranged differently and thus for different works were applicable. Due to the multiplicity of the Chinese characters this procedure was used however rarely. In Europe the printing with wood blocks in the late Middle Ages arose. After that, in 12. Century the paper from the Arabs had arrived and revolutionized Johannes' invention of the printing with mobile metal letters in 1453. The new invention simplified book production and made porduction volumes economy possible. Also with the knowledge of reading rose in th 16th Century and both the number of the works and the range of the editions clearly increased. People-linguistic expenditures developed from Martin Luthers translation of the Bible. The book emancipated itself ever more from the Codex. Like that the expenditures a title page (often with woodcut, later with copper passes) was added, on whitch the bood title, print location, the printing year as well as the name of the printer and the author could be seen. Later table of contents were added, footnotes and index than parted the book. Also covered sticking covers with leather where developed.

Text from