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The Tonsons Publish the First Book Printed Entirely on Wove Paper

10/6/1759 to 1760

The first book printed entirely on James Whatman's wove paper, which had been invented by Whatman circa 1756, and first issued in Baskerville's quarto Virgil published in 1757, was English Shakespearean critic Edward Capell's Prolusions; or, Select Pieces of Antient Poetry. . . . This work was beautifully printed in London by Dryden Leach and completed, according to his colophon, on October 6, 1759.  It was issued by publishers J. and R. Tonson, with a title page dated 1760. By 1759 Whatman's wove paper was substantially improved over that used in the Baskerville Virgil.

Capell's book is notable in bibliography for including the first quasi-facsimile transcriptions of title pages of printed texts referenced.

The work was also the first modern edition of many of the early literary pieces it republished.

Balston, The Whatmans and Wove (Velin) Paper (1998) xxxiv, 85-86.

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