Incunabula: The Printing Revolution in Europe, 1455-1500: Units 90, 91 and 92: Printing in Milan
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In the second half of the fifteenth century, Milan flourished as a cultural and artistic centre, rivalling the primacy of other Northern Italian towns such as Venice and Mantua. The printing industry, established around 1471, thrived in such a vibrant environment and Milan became the third most important printing centre in Italy after Venice and Rome. Printing ventures, set up by both Italian and foreign printers, prospered under the patronage and financial support of the powerful Sforza rulers and their courtiers, religious institutions, eminent jurists, doctors, and humanists as well as merchants and members of minor secular clergy. This most varied and diverse patronage accounts for the diversity of the early Milanese book production, which includes some of the most elegant books, influential literary texts and classical editions, and innovative scientific and juridical works of the incunabula period alongside encomiastic and liturgical texts of more limited local interest. This richness and diversity is fully represented in the present selection of incunabula, which provides a privileged insight into the social, political, cultural, religious and economic life in late fifteenth-century Milan. Unit 90: 399 fiche, 104 titles; Unit 91: approx 320 fiche, 100 titles; Unit 92: approx 320 fiche, 100 titles.