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Chambers, Ephraim, 1680 (ca.)-1740 / Cyclopædia, or, An universal dictionary of arts and sciences : containing the definitions of the terms, and accounts of the things signify'd thereby, in the several arts, both liberal and mechanical, and the several sciences, human and divine : the figures, kinds, properties, productions, preparations, and uses, of things natural and artificial : the rise, progress, and state of things ecclesiastical, civil, military, and commercial : with the several systems, sects, opinions, &c : among philosophers, divines, mathematicians, physicians, antiquaries, criticks, &c : the whole intended as a course of antient and modern learning

Poyning - printing,   pp. 857-878 PDF (21.0 MB)

Page 878

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b3efide the feveral kinds of Letters and Chara~ers above-
trnentioned, ufed in Printing; 5they have likewife Rules for
blank Lines, Borders, and Head and Tail-Pieces, accom-
modated to the feveral kinds of Letters.
The Rules for blank Lines are of Brafs, and made ex-
afly the height of the Letter; otherwife they will either
hinder the neighbouring Letters from printing, or will
themfelves be hindred by 'em. Thefe the Compofitor oc-
cafionally cuts into proper Lengths, as his Work requires.
The Borders are a kind of Ornaments in form of long
Bars, ferving for the Divifions of Books, Chapters, ec.
Their Depth is proportioned to the Letter, and their Length
adjufted to the Page; for being compofed of feveral move-
able Pieces, 'tis eafy lengthening or Shortening 'em.
The Head and fail Pieces, cut either in Wood or Pewter,
are Compartiments ufed at the beginnings and endings of
The initial Letters are Sometimes cut in Wood, and fi-
gured; fometimes caft like the other Chara&ers.
For the Conveniency of the Binding, the Printers had
early recourfe to Signatures, i. e. Letters of the Alphabet
placed at the bottom of the Sheet, which fhew the Order
they are to be bound in; as well as whether the Quires be
The Catch-.Words ferve nearly the fame purpofe; thefe
are the firft Words of each Page, which are repeated at
the bottom of the preceding Pages. The Numbers of the
Pages ore equally Serviceable to the Reader and the Binder,
to guide to References, and to warrant the Book duly
bound and collated : Some Printers formerly put 'em at
the bottoms of the Pages; but Cuflom  has carried it for
the Tops.
In the Infancy of Printing, they had likewife a Regi-
firiem Cbartarurm, for the Convenience of the Binders: To
draw this, at the end of each Volume, they colleaed the
Signatures, and the firft Words of the four firft Sheets of
each Alphabet. To abridge it, they afterwards contented
themfelves to exprefs the Signatures, and how oft each
Letter was repeated. But the Regifirum  has been long
As to the Faults which efcape the Correaor, and Com-
pofitor; they are ufually noted in what they call Errata.
The antient Editions had no Errata ; but in lieu thereof
they correted the Faults in each printed Copy with a Pen;
which was eafy enough in thofe days, tho imprafficable
now. In effedf, we have antiently had Printers who did
not need an Errata of above five Articles in a Volume of
five hundred Sheets: How different from fome of the
prefent Set, who might mrak.e an Errata of five hundred
Articles in a Book of five Sheets ?
There are three Opinions as to the Antiquity of the
Cblnefc- Printing; one fixing it 300 Years before, Chrift;
another 900 Years after him ; and a third carrying it flill
farther back, and making it co-eval with that mighty Em-
pire: rho' it mufl be allow'd the lait is much the leaft
probable of the three.
Their Manner of Printing, we have already hinted to be
very different from that which now obtains among the
Europeans: 'Tis true, it has fome Advantages over ours
in Correfnefs, and the Beauty of the Charaaer; but in
other Refpefs it comes far Ihort : The fingle Advantage
of moveable Characfers making more than amends for all
that is urged againil us by fome zealous Advocates for this
Oriental Printing.
Books are printed in China from wooden Planks, or
.Blocks, cut like thofe ufed in printing of Callico, Paper,
Cards, E!c. among us. See CARD, EC.
Thefe Blocks are of a fmooth, firm, clofe Wood, and
the Size of the Leaf required. On the Face-fide they glue
a Paper, upon which fome able Chinefe Writer draws out
the feveral Letters and Characlers, with a ChinefePen,which
is a kind of Pencil. This is the principal part of the Work,
and that whereon the Succefs of the reft depends.
When finilh'd, the Block is put into the Hands of a
Sculptor, or Cutter in Wood; who, following the feveral
Strokes of the Writer with his Gravers, and other Sharp
little InOruments, makes 'em all appear in Relievo on the
Wood. SeeCUTTINGinMood.
When the Engraving is finifh'd, they moiflen what re-
mains of the Paper, and rub it gently off.
The Ink they ufe in printing is the fame with the com-
mon Chinefe Ink; wherewith they alfo write; and is made
of Lamp-black, mixed up with Oil.
Their Prefs refembles our Rolling-Prefs, much more than
the Letter-Prefs. See ROLLING-Prefs.
As to their Paper, it is inferior to ours: It is made of
the inner Bark or Rind of a kind of Ruffies, beat up with
Water into a Pulp or Pafe, and form'd in Moulds, much like
ours. See PAPER.
The Advantages of the Chinefe-Printing confid in this
that they are not obliged to take off the whole Edition at
once ; but print their Books as they need 'em: That the
Blocks are eafily retouch'd, and made to ferve a-frefh;
and that there needs no Correclor of the Prefs.
Its Difadvantages are, that a large Room will fcarce hold
all the Blocks of a moderate Volume; that the Colour of
the Ink eafily fades ; and that the Paper is apt to tear, and is
fubje&l to Worms: whence it is that we fee fo few antient
Books in China.
Aolling-PR Ess-PRINTING.
Rolling-Prefs-Printing, is employ'd in taking off Prints;
or Impreffions from Copper-Plates engraven, or etch'd. Ste
Itdiffers, aswe havebefore obferv'd, from Letter-printing;
in that the Marks and Chara.6ers, whofe Impreffions are to
be taken, in the former Cafe, are indented, or cut inwards i
and in the latter, are in Relievo, or fland out.
Origin and Progref3 of Rolling-Prefs-PR:Nrz No.
This Art is faid to be as antient as the Year 1460; and
to owe its Origin to Finiguerra, a Florentine Goldfmith,
who calling a piece of engraven Plate in melted J3rimflone,
found the exac Print of the Engraving left in the cold
Brimflone, mark'd with Black licked out of the Strokes
by the liquid Sulphur.
Upon this he attempted to do the fame on filver Plates
with wet Paper, by rolling it fmoothly with a Roller; and
this Succeeded.
This Novelty tempted saccio Baldini, a Goldfmith of
the fame City, to attempt the fame; which he did with
Succefs; ingraving feveral Plates of Sandro !Aoticello's De-
fign, and printing them off this new way: in which he was
follow'd by Andrew Mantegna, then at Rome.
This knowledge getting into Flanders, Martin of Ant-
'zverp, a famous Painter, graved abundance of Plates of his
own Invention, and fent feveral Prints into Italy, marked
thus, M.C.
After him Albert Durer appear'd, and gave the World
a vail number of Prints, both in Wood and Copper.
About this time one Hugo de Carpi, an Italian Painter,
found out a way, by means of feveral Plates of Wood? to
make Prints refemble Defigns of Claro Obfturo; and fome
Years after, the Invention of Etching was difcover'd, which
was foon made ufe of by Parmeggiano.
The Art was not ufed in England till the Time of King
games I. when it was brought trom Antwerp by Speed.
The Structure of the Rolling-Prefs, and the Compofi-
tion of the Ink ufed therein; with the Manner of applying
both in taking off Prints, are as follow.
StruSure of the Rollizg-Prejs.
This Machine, like the common Prefi, may be divided
into two parts; the !Body and Carriage, analogous to thofo
in the other.
The Body confifis of two Cheeks of different Dimenfions;
ordinarily about 4 T1 foot high, a foot thick, and 2 j9 apart;
join'd a-top and bottom by Crofs-pieces. The Cheeks are
placed perpendicularly on a wooden Stand, or Foot, hori-
zontally placed, and fuflaining the whole Prefs.
From the Foot likewife rife four other perpendicular
pieces, join'd by other crofs or horizontal ones; which may
be confider'd as the Carriage of the Prefs, as ferving to
fullain a finooth, even Plank; which is about 4 ! foot long,
a 2 foot broad, and an inch I thick: upon which the en-
graven Plate is to be placed.
Into the Cheeks go two wooden Cylinders, or Rollers,
about fix Inches in diameter, bore up at each end by the
Cheeks; thofe Ends, which are leffen'd to about a Inches
diameter, and call'd l'runnions, turn in the Cheeks be-
tween two pieces of Wood, in form of Half Moons, and
lined with polifhed Iron, to facilitate the Motion.
The Space in the half Moons, left vacant by the Trun-
nion, is fill'd with Paper, Pafilboard, Eec. that they may be
rais'd and lower'd at discretion; fo as only to leave the
fpace between them, neceffary for the paffiage of the Plank,
charg'd with the Plate, Paper, and Blankets.
Lafily, to one of the Trunnions of the upper Roller, is
fiflen'd a Croy, confiding of two Levers, or Pieces of
Wood, traverfing each other. The Arms of this Crofs
ferve, in lieu of the Handle of the common Prefs; giving a
Motion to the upper Roller, and thaY to the under; by
which means the Rlank is protruded, or pafs'd between
Preparation of the Ink.
The Ink ufed in Rolling-Prefs-Printing, is a Compofition
of Black, and Oil mix'd and boil'd together in a due Pro-

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