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William Caxton

Subject: Literature

(c. 1422–91),

the first English printer. He printed the first book in English in 1474 and went on to produce about eighty other texts.

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1422–91?)   Reference library

The Oxford Guide to Literary Britain & Ireland (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Literature, Society and culture
Length:
16 words

..., William ( 1422–91? ), printer and translator : b. Sevenoaks Weald ; buried in London ( St Margaret 's, Westminster...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1415/24–1492)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to English Literature (7 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Literature
Length:
165 words

...). Caxton's translations, calculated to appeal to Burgundian tastes among English readers, influenced the development of 15th‐century prose style. See Caxton's Prologues and Epilogues , ed. W. J. B. Crotch (EETS os 176, 1927; repr. 1957) ; N. F. Blake , Caxton and his World (1969) ; N. F. Blake , William Caxton and Literary Culture (1991) ; Caxton's Own Prose , ed. N. F. Blake (1973) ; G. D. Painter , William Caxton: A Quincentenary Biography ...

CAXTON, William

CAXTON, William (c.1420–91)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Children's Literature (2 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015
Subject:
Literature, Children's literature studies
Length:
74 words

...CAXTON, William ( c. 1420–91 ) Caxton Introduced printing to England, and published a number of books which, though not specifically intended for children, appealed to young readers. Among these were his translation of The History of Troy ( 1473–4 ), the first book to be printed in English, Reynard the Fox ( 1481 ), the fables of Aesop ( 1484 ), and Malory ’s Morte Darthur ( 1485...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1421–91)   Reference library

Jane Kingsley-Smith

The Oxford Companion to Shakespeare (2 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015

..., William ( 1421–91 ), translator and the first English printer. Caxton worked in the Low Countries as an agent for silk merchants and came upon printing during a business trip to Cologne. On his return to England, he set up his own press and printed the first book in English, The Recuyell of the Histories of Troy , in 1475 . He went on to print over 70 books including Chaucer ’s Canterbury Tales and Troilus and Criseyde , Gower ’s Confessio amantis , and Malory ’s Morte d’Arthur . Shakespeare referred to The Recuyell , Caxton’s own...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1422?–91)   Reference library

The Oxford Dictionary of the Middle Ages

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2010
Subject:
History, Early history (500 CE to 1500)
Length:
364 words

...voragine ; printing and printed book production ; textiles and cloth-making . Mel Storm N. F. Blake , ed., Caxton’s Own Prose (1973). W. J. B. Crotch , The Prologues and Epilogues of William Caxton (1928; repr. 1971). L. Hellinga, Caxton in Focus: The Beginning of Printing in England (1982). —— ‘ Printing ’, in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain , ed. eadem and J. B. Trapp (1998), vol. 3, 65–108. G. D. Painter , William Caxton: A Biography ...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1420/24–1491/92)   Reference library

The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Reformation

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2005
Subject:
History, modern history (1700 to 1945), Religion
Length:
443 words

...and printed. A legacy of England's didactic and moralistic literary tastes, to which Caxton contributed, can be found in the popularity for printed Protestant works that developed once the Church of England was established in the 1530s. Blake, N. F. William Caxton and English Literary Culture . London, 1991. This series of essays by today's preeminent Caxton scholar is the most up-to-date assessment of his life and career. Deacon, Richard . A Biography of William Caxton, the First English Editor, Merchant and Translator . London, 1976. Popular biography...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1422–91)   Reference library

The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (3 rev. ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Religion
Length:
372 words

...Typography of William Caxton (2 vols., 1861–3; rev. edn., 1877). N. F. Blake , Caxton: England's First Publisher (1976). G. D. Painter , William Caxton: A Quincentenary Biography of England's First Printer (1976). In 1976 the quincentenary commemorations of Caxton's coming to Westminster gave rise to a large number of works, most importantly the catalogues of exhibitions held in the British Library and Cambridge University Library, 24 Sept. 1976–31 Jan. 1977 , both entitled William Caxton and pub. in 1976 . L. Hellinga , Caxton in Focus: The...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William   Reference library

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Children's Literature

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2006
Subject:
Literature, Children's literature studies
Length:
155 words

..., William ( c.1422–c.1491 ), the first English printer. Born in Kent, Caxton moved to London as an apprentice ( 1436 ) and eventually to Bruges as governor of the “merchants adventurers” in the Low Countries. He learned printing in Cologne, and on returning to Bruges he printed The Recuyell of the Historyes of Troye ( 1474–1475 ), the first printed book in English. Caxton opened a print shop in Westminster in 1476 and produced the Dictes or Sayengis of the Philosophres , the first book printed in England. Translator and printer of about one hundred...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (?1427)   Reference library

The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Art & Architecture
Length:
531 words
Illustration(s):
1

...Cessolis and printed by William Caxton (London, British Library, c.10b.1., fol. 2 r ); photo credit: HIP/Art Resource, NY ODNB N. F. Blake : Caxton and his World (London, 1969) N. F. Blake : Caxton: England's First Publisher (London, 1976) G. D. Painter : William Caxton: A Quincentenary Biography of England's First Printer (London, 1976) L. Hellinga : Caxton in Focus: The Beginnings of Printing in England (London, 1982) N. F. Blake : William Caxton: A Bibliographical Guide (New York, 1985) N. F. Blake : William Caxton and English Literary...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (c.1420–c.1492)   Reference library

D. C. Whaley

The Oxford Companion to British History (2 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015
Subject:
History, Regional and National History
Length:
187 words

..., William ( c. 1420– c. 1492 ) . A prominent merchant from Kent, Caxton established the first successful press in an England slow to adopt metallographic printing with movable type. Caxton learned printing in Cologne and the Low Countries, producing the first printed book in English—his own translation of Le Receuil des histoires de Troye —in Bruges c. 1473–4 . His press at Westminster, established in 1476 , printed nearly 100 volumes, including works by Chaucer , Gower , Lydgate , and Malory , and translated writings on chivalry, morality, and...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William   Reference library

The Oxford Dictionary of the Renaissance

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2005

..., William ( c. 1422–1492 ), English printer. A merchant from Kent, Caxton learned printing in the Low Countries, where from 1465 to 1469 he was governer of the English merchants in Bruges. He successfully exploited his skill with a press set up at Westminster in 1476 , on which he published nearly 100 volumes on a variety of subject matter, including literary works by Chaucer and Malory . Dictionary of National Biography ; The Dictionary of Art...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William   Quick reference

A Dictionary of British History (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015
Subject:
History, Regional and National History
Length:
73 words

..., William ( c. 1420– c. 1492 ). A prominent merchant from Kent, Caxton established the first successful press in England. He learned printing in Cologne and the Low Countries, producing the first printed book in English—his own translation of Le Receuil des histoires de Troye —in Bruges c. 1473–4 . His press at Westminster, established in 1476 , printed nearly 100 volumes, including works by Chaucer , Gower , John Lydgate , and Malory...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1422–91)   Quick reference

A Dictionary of World History (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015
Subject:
History
Length:
63 words

..., William ( c . 1422–91 ) The first English printer. Having learned the art of printing on the Continent, Caxton printed his first English text in 1474 , when living in Bruges, and after returning to London in 1476 went on to produce about 80 other texts, including editions of Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur , Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales , and his own translations of French...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1427)   Reference library

The Grove Encyclopedia of Medieval Art and Architecture

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2013

...death, his press was taken over by his assistant Wynkyn de Worde ( c. 1456–1535 ). Bibliography N. F. Blake : Caxton and his World (London, 1969) N. F. Blake : Caxton: England’s First Publisher (London, 1976) G. D. Painter : William Caxton: A Quincentenary Biography of England’s First Printer (London, 1976) L. Hellinga : Caxton in Focus: The Beginnings of Printing in England (London, 1982) N. F. Blake : William Caxton and English Literary Culture (London, 1991) M. W. Driver : The Image in Print: Book Illustration in Late Medieval England...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1422–91)   Quick reference

World Encyclopedia

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2004
Subject:
Encyclopedias
Length:
58 words

..., William ( 1422–91 ) First English printer . Following a period in Cologne ( 1470–72 ), where he learned printing, he set up his own press In 1476 at Westminster. He published more than 100 items many of them his own translations from French, Latin and Dutch. Among his most influential publications were editions of Chaucer , Gower , and Malory...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (c.1420–92)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to the Book

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2010
Subject:
History, Social sciences
Length:
500 words

...and diplomat. The clientele for his books was not, however, confined to this circle, and he must be considered instrumental in creating new readers for English works appearing in print. Lotte Hellinga N. F. Blake , William Caxton: A Bibliographical Guide (1985) — ed., Caxton’s Own Prose (1973) BMC 11 ODNB G. D. Painter , William Caxton ...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (1415/24–1492)   Quick reference

The Concise Oxford Companion to English Literature (4 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2013
Subject:
Literature
Length:
109 words

..., William ( 1415/24–1492 ) The first English printer. After apprenticeship in London he worked for approximately 30 years in the Low Countries, where he translated the first book printed in English, the Recuyell of the Historyes of Troye , and translated and printed The Game and Playe of the Chesse . The first major work published from his Westminster press was The Canterbury Tales ( c. 1476 ). His version of Malory was regarded as authoritative before the discovery of the Winchester Manuscript by W. F. Oakeshott ( 1934 ). Caxton's translations,...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William   Reference library

The Oxford Encyclopedia of British Literature

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2006
Subject:
Literature
Length:
2,267 words

...Malory . Editions Blake, Norman F. , ed. Caxton's Own Prose . London, 1973. Crotch, W. J. B. , ed. The Prologues and Epilogues of William Caxton . Early English Text Society, original series 176. London, 1928. Culley, W. T. , and Frederick J. Furnivall , eds. Eneydos . Early English Text Society, extra series 57. London, 1890. Furnivall, Frederick J. , ed. Caxton's Book of Curtesye . Early English Text Society, extra series 3. London, 1868. Further Reading Blades, William . The Life and Typography of William Caxton, England's First Printer . 2 vols. London...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William   Reference library

Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase & Fable (19 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2013

..., William The father of English printing, whose name has come to be applied to branded articles in the printing and paper trades. He was born c. 1422 in Kent and learned his printing in Cologne and Bruges. He set up shop at the sign of the Red Pole in the shadow of Westminster Abbey in about 1476 and died in 1491 , by which time he had printed about a hundred books. He was printer, publisher, retailer and...

Caxton, William

Caxton, William (c.1422–91)   Quick reference

The Concise Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2014
Subject:
Religion
Length:
74 words

..., William ( c. 1422–91 ), the first English printer . After some years in commerce, he worked for Margaret, Duchess of Burgundy , for whom he made several English translations. Tiring of copying these by hand, he learnt the new art of printing at Cologne ( 1471–2 ) and introduced it at Bruges. By Sept. 1476 he had set up his press at the Almonry, Westminster. Much of his printing was of religious...

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