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Koopman in kennis: de uitgever Willem Jansz Blaeu (1571-1638) in de geleerde wereld van zijn tijd

van Netten, D. H. 2012 Groningen: s.n.. 235 p.

Research output: ScientificDoctoral Thesis

  • D.H. van Netten
Science is never just an intellectual affair: there are also cultural, materiial and commercial dimensions. Knowledge becomes science. only when it is reproduced and cmnmunicated. Knowledge, communication and commerce are narrowly entwined and the interaction between them determines determines what we call science. To understand the development of science it is important to recognize and research this interaction, In early modern times, book publishers were very significant in making science possible. simply because they shared knowledge. Moreover, they were able to influence science itself by the way they selected and presented the knowledge they published. Their role in the production of a book was far from passive. Early modern publishers were active intermediates and very important in laying out the scientific infrastructure of their time. Very interesting in this respect is the Amstedam publisher Willem Jansz Blaeu (1571-1638). Blaeu is most famous as a cartographer, but he was a lot more than this: Blaeu was a mathematician, a typographer, a publisher and a merchant; he presented, communicated and sold knowledge and thereby shaped the science of his day. This thesis examines what part Blaeu played in the scbolarly world. It shows how he made knowledge public and to what extent he was able to put his seal upon this knowledge. It turns out that, in addition to great ideas, scIence demands blood, sweat and tears, as well as material goods such as paper, ink and money. Knowledge is communicated in many ways: through public lectures and private conversations, in letters and other manuscripts, in print and on the internet. The invention of printing was a crucial point in the history of science. From the middle of the fifteenth century, printing made it possible to disseminate scientific texts, illustratiom and tabIes in large quantities. Scholars could gather and compare more knowledge.Wwith the aid of the printing press, it became possible to spread (new) knowledge more quickly, allowing many others to build on it. Thus a printer was literally someone who reproduced knowledge. Around 1600, publishing in printed books was certainly not the only way to communicate knowledge. However, it was the only way to make information accessible for the general (invisible and partly unknown) public and to preserve it for posterity. At first, this was delivered in books and pamphlets, and then later in the seventeenth century, the first scientific journals appeared. The emphasis on printed matter is justified, be it simply because most people encountered new knowledge in ptinted form. The production of books different phases in which different people contributed to the final form and content. In addition to authors and editors of a text, printers, publishers and booksellers were of great importance. They presented the author's ideas, so that they became attractive for others; to read, to work with and (therefore) to purchase.
Original languageDutch
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
Award date12-Apr-2012
Place of PublicationGroningen
Print ISBNs978-90-367-5437-8
StatePublished - 2012

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