SMC228 OCTOBER 4

5 Pages
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Department
St. Michael's College Courses
Course Code
SMC228H1
Professor
Lindsey Eckert

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Description
SMC228 - October 4 2011 The Hand Press Period Midterm - October 18 - 1 hour - 15 vocab identifications (30 pts) - One diagram to label (10 points) - 4 short answer essay questions (15 points for question = 60 pts) - you’ll be choosing from a list of 6 potential questions - questions focus on processes we have been discussing in class and general concepts Ex., short answer question: Describe the process of printing a sheet of text on a common press. You should use accurate terminology when discussing the key steps and the parts of the press itself. What Is The Hand Press Period? - From around 1500 - 1800 - characterized by the use of the common press which was made of wood - all of the moveable type was set by hand - each individual letter you see from the printed book of a hand press period is done by some person setting it individually - 1500 - 1800 --> like all narratives of media transitions, it wasn’t like BOOM 1800 out with the common press in with steel, there is alot of overlap, it was a transition, with the hand press and machine press period - 1800 is usually chosen as the date b/c has more to do with changes in paper production than what is has to do with initial changes of type setting What is the Machine Press Period? - From around 1800 - 1950 - characterized by innovations in the production of paper, typesetting, and the movement from wood to steel presses - rather than individual people typecasting individual letters which would then be individually set by someone else, you have the introduction of machines - you also see the movement from wood to steel presses, the common press is made of wood - after 1800 you begin to see the intro of functions that works like the wood press The Life of A Text in The Hand Press Period - what is the life of a text in the hand press period? - one of the main takeways is the idea of transmission and how many people are involved in this process - McGann from last week: “Process of transcription is characterized by variation […] such variation may be assumed to be universal, every transcription introdcuing some variants” - every transition is introducing something new - what can bibliography then tell us? --> bibliography helps us understand those changes, when are they taking place - another key and implicit point --> books lie to you, title pages lie to you (a theme throughout the course). A book may say that it is the 3rd edition printed in 1753...when in fact no it is the text of the 2nd edition with a new title page - you can’t trust necessarily what the content says, sometimes the content will lie to you - you have to look at the material book and what the book as a material object will say to you Casting Type in the Hand Press Period Moveable Type 1. A person called a punch cutter carved an individual letter in reverse, this resulted in a punch - This is where Gutenburg’s training in type was essential 2. The punch was hammered into a softer piece of metal to create a right-reading impression of the letter called a matrix - this impression of the letter is called the matrix 3. The matrix would be filed and fitted into a type casting instrument made of wood 4. Molten metal would be poured ****Find the rest on the slides Basic Equipment - 1 or more common press - number of presses was based on region and demand - cases of type - a more active and lucrative print shop would have many cases of type, different forms, bold, italic, etc. - once they were worn down they would melt these pieces down adn recast them into type once again - wooden furniture and quoins - quoins used to lock up textbooks - chases - galley trays Common Press Diagram - bed = where you set your type to be printed. - composing stick = metal or wood. This is where you set your individual lines of type - timpin= like a drum; where you would place your sheet of paper. - frisket = bare in the diagram but it would normally be covered with some sort of skin or paper and the cut a whole in it to protect the white space of printed page. If printing a small amount of text you would use it to protect the rest of the sheet of paper - platen = big flat wooden metal piece that is going to create an impression. Essential that it is flat and heavy. One of the real restrictions of the hand press period was the platen’s size. Stone platen’s were especially hard to find. There were restrictions on the size of sheet. - bar= the lever that you pull to create the impression Type - expensive - smaller print shops would only have a limited supply of one or two differnet fonts - intense bibliographical work has been done about tracing broken pieces of type - you can tell that this specific letter was used in this specific print shop during these specific years - type can be a powerful bibliographical tool - often smaller print shops would only have a limited supply of one or two different forms - large operations would have a wide selection of typefaces and slates - type was organized into cases: compartmented trays in which type is kept for composition. Important to keep things separated and organized. Chase and Furniture - chase: a frame in which pages of type are arranged and locked up for printing - furniture: wood spacing material set around a text block to lock it in a chase The People - lots of people involved in print shop - most of the people were drunkards - lots of historical records of people i
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