Detail map of Faiyum Governorate, Egypt,Cairo Governorate, Egypt,Innere Stadt, Wien, Wien, Austria

A: Faiyum Governorate, Egypt, B: Cairo Governorate, Egypt, C: Innere Stadt, Wien, Wien, Austria

Block Printing May have been Practiced by Arabs and Jews as early as the Mid-14th Century

Circa 1350
<p>Hebrew bock-print from the late fourteenth centry.&nbsp; In the Genizah Collection.</p>

Hebrew bock-print from the late fourteenth centry.  In the Genizah Collection.

Fragments of block-printing on paper in Arabic and Hebrew from the Cairo Genizah, the storeroom of the Ben Ezra Synagogue in Fustat, Old Cairo, Egypt, now preserved in the Taylor-Schechter Genizah Research Unit at Cambridge University Library, indicate that block-printing may have been practiced by Arabs and Jews as early as the mid-14th century.

Examples of wood block printing in Arabic excavated in 1880 in the region of El-Fayyum (Faiyum) in Egypt are also thought to date from the mid-14th century. They are preserved in the Erzherzog (Archduke) Rainer Collection in the Austrian National Library, Vienna.

Carter, Invention of Printing in China 2nd ed (1955) 176-181.

Timeline Themes