Polart has obtained the exclusive distribution of the facsimile of the most valuable book in the world, the Gutenberg Bible, the first book printed using movable type. The original Gutenberg Bible is owned by the monastery in Pelplin, Poland. A Polish publishing company, specializing in unique book releases, secured the rights for this facsimile crafting a limited edition of only 198 facsimiles—of which 99 are available worldwide, and only 11 for the USA. Presently, they are highly sought after, and reach high prices at art auctions.
Work on this facsimile of the Gutenberg Bible lasted two full years. Institutions from Poland, Germany, and Japan were involved in the project. The quality of the reproduction of the original's detail is so high, it can be looked on as if it were the actual original (for example, if Johannes Gutenberg mistakenly inverted a watermark, the book will have it inverted as well). The late Pope John Paul II got the first copy, and it lies within the Vatican.
The exceptional importance of the Pelplin facsimile of the Gutenberg Bible lies in a tiny, but extremely valuable, detail. In the left margin on page 46 of the first volume, there is a visible ink spot, sized 25 x 7 mm. This fortunately preserved spot is probably of a font that fell from the typesetter's hands while he was working. This mark allowed the researchers to reconstruct Gutenberg's printing font, a detail which is invaluable to historians.
The Pelplin Bible is unique because:
• Only five Bibles have the original binding from Gutenberg's time (the remainder were again bound in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries)
• It is the only one in the world which includes the bookbinder's name—Henry Coster of Lübeck
• It has a mistake from the printing process. The Pelplin Bible by Gutenberg is one of very few that survived centuries of European wars and disruptions. Its value, if available for sale, is estimated to be in the range of $100-$110 million.
About the "Gutenberg Bible" Facsimile Edition
Johann Gutenberg's Gutenberg Bible was original created in Mainz, Germany during 1452 —1455 and printed in the Latin language. This facsimile edition comes in two volumes, each measuring 12.4" x 16.9" x 4.5". It is specially made with stained and fluff imitation handmade paper and features a watermark as in the original. The binding is oak boards covered with soft maroon leather and brass tumors with edges secured by blackened brass corner fittings. Leather straps with attached brass clamps prevent the book from unwanted opening and damage. Facsimile volumes are beautifully packaged in a leather suitcase, a replica of the one made for the original in 1939.
Due to the unique nature of this publication we can accept no refunds/returns.
Free delivery worldwide in 3-5 weeks.
Ships directly from Poland
What is a facsimile?
A facsimile edition is the photo-mechanical reproduction of a unique, practically two-dimensional model; it eliminates as much manual copy work as possible, reflects the inner and outer aspects of the original to the highest degree, incorporates all possible technical means available, guarantees the protection and preservation of the original, and is suitable for both scientific and artistic interests. A facsimile must act as a true surrogate of the original.
A facsimile is a reproduction of a unique source. In contrast to a reprint, a facsimile is also always a first edition of a manuscript. It should never reproduce only a portion of the manuscript or its decoration. Completeness is as indispensable as the original format. Accuracy to the original color tones, as much as modern techniques allow, is obvious but the thoughtful publisher and printer will make an attempt to maintain other aspects as well, such as the fascicle layout of the manuscript and points that can be decisive for a detailed study and can serve as scientific proofs. It must be possible for a scholar to work from the facsimile without using the original, thus saving it from further hardships. The type of printing process is not included among these criteria, as it is possible today to produce a facsimile using a variety of printing techniques and methods.