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Printers, Booksellers And Protestantism

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Chapter Summary

Though Protestantism as a movement only emerged over sixty years after the invention of printing, the spread of the Reformation has traditionally been seen as offering an important stimulus to the development of the printing presses in Europe. Despite the unpopularity of the Reformation in the duchy, a number of Breton booksellers and printers moved towards the new faith. Members of the book trade were particularly involved in the religious debates of their time. Protestantism seems to have been particularly attractive to members of the book trade in Rennes. The dangers faced by those who sought to sell banned religious books affected the availability of Protestant editions in the duchy. To address some of the problems of distribution that resulted from the persecution of Calvinists, some members of the Genevan book trade went as far as to go to Brittany in person.

Keywords: booksellers; Brittany; printers; protestantism; Rennes



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