Government Use of Print. Official Publications in the Holy Roman Empire, 1500–1600

Saskia Limbach


Studien zur europäischen Rechtsgeschichte 326
Frankfurt am Main: Klostermann 2021, 348 p.

ISSN 1610-6040
ISBN 978-3-465-04425-3

Presenting the most comprehensive account of official print in the Holy Roman Empire during the sixteenth century, this study investigates the use of the printing press as an increasingly important instrument in the expansion of authority. By comparing and contrasting publications printed in the Duchy of Württemberg and in the Free Imperial City of Cologne, the author traces the tentative beginnings of collaboration between rulers and printers. Making use of hitherto unexplored legal and business records, the study offers a sophisticated analysis of the early modern print trade which allows us to ascertain the business and market conditions that shaped the production of administrative and legal documents, such as police ordinances and announcements.

Awarded the 2022 Preis für Geisteswissenschaften by the Göttingen Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Lower Saxony (Niedersächsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen).

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