karen_w_newton (karen_w_newton) wrote,

Found in a monastery . . .

Epistle to the faithful brothers of this monastery, written December 3, 1460

Dear brothers, I wish to address the agitation that has overcome our beloved cloister at the astounding news that a German craftsman named Gutenberg has invented a machine to make books. The machine, which from all accounts more closely resembles an olive press than anything else, can write an entire page in a matter of a few moments. Further news makes it clear that Herr Gutenberg has used the new machine to create many copies of a Holy Bible.

I know that many of you are concerned about the potential for chaos from the creation of Holy Writ by means other than from the loving hands of faithful, God-fearing monks, toiling for days over each beautiful page. However, I beseech you to consider that by creating so many copies of our Lord's word, Herr Gutenberg may, in fact, be reaching more souls with a few days' work than one of us could achieve in a lifetime. And after all, dear brothers, as much as we love the glorious illuminations we create, is it not the words on the pages we copy that matter, rather than the vellum on which they are written?

(Signed) Charles the Pious, Abbott


Susbtitue “New York literary establishment” for cloister
Substitute “ebooks” for printed books

Tags: e-boooks, ebooks, publishing

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