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Wren Display: The Aldine Device

Scipionis Capicii, De Principiis rerum libri duo

Venice, 1546

The use of the printer’s device was common in the late-15th and early-16th centuries. The device was a pictorial image which identified the printer. This one is from the Venetian press of Aldus Manutius (d. 1515). The anchor symbolised stability and the dolphin was the symbol of Venice.

The device also recalled a coin of the Roman Emperor Vespasian which reminded readers of Aldine Press’ scheme to publish classics of the ancient world.

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