Laurens Janszoon Coster, Dutch printer

Laurens Janszoon Coster, Dutch printer

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Caption: Laurens Janszoon Coster (c.1370-c.1440), Dutch printer, with a printing clamp and printed pages. Coster was a citizen of Haarlem, in the Netherlands, and held the position of sexton (Koster). Some books are said to have been printed by him, but none of the attributions are certain. He is thought to have perished during an epidemic of the plague. Some claim that he was the first person to invent the printing press, but this honour is usually given to Johann Gutenberg. Engraving from the 1883 edition of Vies des Savants Illustres.

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