JEAN-LOUP CHARMET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JEAN-LOUP CHARMET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Printing press. Historical artwork of a man operating a 16th century printing press. His colleagues are compiling the printed sheets into books. Printing presses like this were operated by a lever which turned a screw-threaded column (upper centre), which pressed the horizontal, inked plate down onto the paper. The European printing press was invented by Johann Gutenberg in about 1450. His invention was originally a deriva- tion of the presses farmers used to make olive oil. The printing press allowed the mass-producti- on of cheap text thus greatly advancing the spread of knowledge. Artwork from a book from the Bibliotheque des Arts Decroratifs, Paris, France.
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