Posted to the blog as per Prof. Dr. Ernst Rohmer’s (Regensburg) request. Please address inquiries directly to Prof. Rohmer (email address below).
Call for Papers: Printmaking in the residential town of Sulzbach in its historical context
The history of printing and bookselling in the 17th century is a first-rate research desideratum. While the Reformation as an incubation period and the 18th century as a turning point towards books as a mass medium can be regarded as fundamentally researched, especially from the point of view of economic history, little attention was paid to the time in between. The specific situation in the Pfalzgrafschaft Sulzbach in the second half of the 17th century can be an impulse to examine the Printing Press guided by current approaches of cultural studies in media historiography and the history of science.
In the last third of the 17th century several printers worked in the residence town of Sulzbach, which, favoured by the tolerance policy of Palatine Count Christian August, produced books and other printed products of all kinds, partly in cooperation with publishers mainly in Nuremberg, but also beyond that. The printshops of Abraham Lichtenthaler (1621-1704, from 1664 in Sulzbach), continued by Georg Abraham Lichtenthaler (1684-1736) and Georg Abraham Lorenz Lichtenthaler (1711-1780), as well as those of Johann Holst (1648-1726), should be mentioned. Above all, however, the founding of a Hebrew printing house in 1684, led by Moses Bloch, was based on the sovereign’s interest in Jewish culture on the one hand and can be regarded as a mercantilist project on the other, the success of which can be seen from the fact that it quickly became one of the leading Jewish printing houses in Europe.
There are some general remarks on the history of book printing in Sulzbach, but they do not take a closer look at the publisher’s programmes or address the special features (e.g. cooperation among each other, but also with publishers). For this reason, the Christian Knorr von Rosenroth Society is focusing its 2019 Annual Conference on
Letterpress printing in the residential town of Sulzbach in a historical context
and invites interested scholars from the fields of book science, history of science, theology, medicine, law and history, but also from philology, to participate in its interdisciplinary orientation. Contributions are welcome which help to classify the Sulzbach printshops and the printed products produced there historically, but also those which place the regional events in a larger context.
Already a first bibliographical indexing shows that the printers in Sulzbach did not least fall back on successful titles whose sales seemed to be secured. There are indications that the ‘Simultaneum’ decreed by the sovereign offered ideal conditions for the printing trade at the intersection between the Protestant territories of the imperial city of Nuremberg and the Franconian margraves on the one hand and the Catholic Amberg on the other. Finally, the establishment of the Hebrew printshop is the result of a sovereign intervention, from which synergies resulted; the Sulzbach printshops were obviously able to produce even complex and extensive prints. Blochsche Druckerei achieved a leading position in the production of Hebrew prints, which was preserved well into the 18th century, but Lichtenthaler Druckerei also continued to flourish among the following generations, so that the printing trade remained of great importance for the city even after the extinction of the dynasty and the associated loss of the residence until the 19th century.
However, the history of the Sulzbach printing works after the Early Modern Period will not be the subject of the conference. Based on the indexing of the preserved books from Sulzbach printing works in VD 17 (printing place: Sulzbach, Sultzbac*, Sulzbac*, Sulbac*, Solisbac*, Zûlṣbʾaḵ) and partly also in VD 18, potential subjects of lectures are:
- Book censorship in Sulzbach in historical comparison – the Sulzbach renewed censorship
- The relations of the Nuremberg publishers Endter and Hoffmann with the printers in
- technical-content-related questions
◦ on Hebrew Printing
◦ on the literature of Catholics in the printing house of a Protestant (e.g. Florentius
Schilling, Georg Mentzius)
◦ on legal manuals, guides and case collections (Franz Friedrich von Andlern, Octavio
◦ for travel literature, country descriptions, especially Turcica (Johann Sigmund
Wurffbain, Johann Heinrich Seyfried, Caspar Bruschius)
◦ medical literature (e.g. publications by Georg Bartisch, Elias Beynon, Jan Baptista
◦ about individual authors (Michael Münchmeyer, Andreas Lazarus von Imhof, Johann
Hieronymus Imhof, Adam Contzen, Clamerus Florinus)
◦ on the equipment of the books: numerous prints contain copper.
- The Card Game as a Medium (Andreas Strobl)
- Sulzbach Calendar
The above topics are not meant to be exhaustive. The organisers are happy to receive suggestions for contributions with some characterising remarks on the subject of the study until 31.10.2018. They are requested to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
The conference takes place in Sulzbach-Rosenberg on 5./6.7.2019. The conference papers will be published in “Morgen-Glantz. Yearbook of the Christian Knorr von Rosenroth Society” for the year 2020.
For speakers, the Society will raise subsidies to cover the costs of travel and accommodation in Sulzbach-Rosenberg. The conference starts on Friday at 2 pm and ends on Saturday at 6 pm. Sulzbach-Rosenberg is located on the A 6 (Nuremberg-Prague) or can be reached from Nuremberg and Regensburg by regional express trains every hour.
Prof. Dr. Ernst Rohmer
Institut für Germanistik
Prof. Dr. Rosmarie Zeller
CH – 4051 Basel
Knorr-von-Rosenroth Gesellschaft e.V.