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Communications: Gutenberg Bible

About our Replica

Thrift Library Receives Gutenberg Bible Replica - October 2012

This generous gift from Dr. Julian M. Smith of Anderson beautifully reproduces the fine art and craftsmanship of the 1450’s Gutenberg Bible.

Our copy is kept in the library archives and brought out for special occasions. You may see it upon request though. Just ask as the Front Desk.

Each volume is 18"H by 12"W and weighs about twenty-two pounds.


Gutenberg deliberately left space for the addition of hand drawn letters and details. These beautiful, ornamental details were called Rubrications.

More on Rubrications



Notice that while chapters are numbered by hand (XXVIII), there are no page or verse numbers.


About the Gutenberg Bible

The Gutenberg Bible was the first Bible printed with movable type. Text is arranged in two columns of 42 lines. There are no page or verse numbers. Illustration by hand occurred after printing in a separate process, if at all, which makes each creation unique. Some Gutenberg Bibles have no illustrations.

The work was published in two volumes with the first volume ending with the Book of Psalms.

Interestingly, while original Gutenberg Bibles are estimated to be worth 25 to 35 million dollars now, they were originally produced as a cost-savings alternative to handwritten Bibles.

Thrift Library's Facsimile of the Gutenberg Bible

Gutenberg left extra wide margins for illumination.


During the Middle Ages, the peacock symbolized immortality.

The Guttenberg Bible - Easton Edition

The book features the complete text and all the interior illuminations from a unique original. Oversized Edition (12” x 16”, 1,288pp)

Subject Guide

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Betsy Elsner
Thrift Library
Anderson University
316 Boulevard
Anderson, SC 29621