Initials T.gifhat is Letterpress

The simplest form of printing, Letterpress is the process of printing from a relief image, similar in many ways to potato cuts and lino cuts which children do in school. The image is in reverse as you view the image,Guttenburg.gif it is inked and is printed directly onto the paper.  The process was made popular with the invention of movable type in around 1450. The man who developed movable type a goldsmith from Mainz called Johann Gutenberg is viewed as the founder of the process in Europe which he perfected by around 1450.  dashes3.gifThe process was then brought to England by William Caxton in 1476. Some 26 years after Gutenberg perfected his process, Letterpress grew to dominate the printing industry, developing from the early wooden presses of Caxton through to the iron presses, platen presses, flat bed and rotary presses. Newspapers were some of the last printers to move away from large scale letterpress printing and now only a few specialised printers use letterpress.  Though Hot Foil Printing does to an extent use letterpress equipment it is viewed as a totally different process. A large proportion of equipment has gone to the scrap yards and has not been preserved for posterity, some fine examples can still be found though fewer and fewer are brought to light.