Oldest example of printing in Edinburgh on display

January 2, 2010 by  

The oldest example of printing in Edinburgh, and indeed the whole of Scotland, is to be put on public display for the first time. The printing example is a book of Psalms from the 11th century, and has been kept in Edinburgh University since the 17th century. The book has never before been placed on public display.

It isn’t known who the book was printed for but it is believed to have been for a figure of some importance at the time, perhaps even the Queen of Scotland, St Margaret. The Scottish book has been compared to the Book of Kells, which is in Dublin, for its importance to Scotland and Scottish print.

The exhibition is called the Masterpieces 1 and it is being held at Edinburgh University for everyone to experience.

There are other examples of print in Edinburgh being exhibited as well, including the first book to be printed in a Gaelic language. John Knox’s Book of Common Order is the only copy of the book to exist in Scotland, and it was printed in Edinburgh in 1567.

There is also a copy of the Aberdeen Breviary, the first substantial printed book in Scotland and believed to be the best surviving example of the book. This book was printed between 1509 and 1510.

In adition to the Scottish printed works, visitors will also be able to see a rare copy of Romeo and Juliet that was actually printed while William Shakespeare was still alive. This book was printed in 1626.