Mazarin Bible (măzˈərĭn) [key], considered to be the first important work printed by Gutenberg and the earliest book printed from movable types. The Bible, printed at Mainz, probably required several years of work; it was completed not later than 1455 and printed in an edition of about 180 copies. The text of the Bible is Latin. The type is a Gothic style related to Old English and similar to the best handwriting of the time. Colored initials and other illuminations were hand drawn. The pages of the book are folio, each page is in two columns, and, with few exceptions, each column has 42 lines. The edition includes both vellum and paper copies. In design and workmanship, the Mazarin Bible holds its place as one of the finest of all printed books. It is called the Mazarin Bible because the first copy to recapture attention was in the library of Cardinal Mazarin, in Paris. It is called also the Gutenberg Bible and the 42-line Bible.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.