1998 Prof. Dr. Henri-Jean Martin

Book Historian / Paris, France

Born in Paris in 1924 and deceased in 2007, Henri-Jean Martin was one of the most important book historians of our time. From 1947 to 1958 he was a conservator at the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. In 1962, he became chief conservator of the Municipal Libraries of Lyon and created the Lyoner Musée de l'Imprimerie with the master printer Marius Audin. In addition, he was Professor of the École national des chartes and in 1985 finally President of the Institut d'Etudes du Livre in Paris.
Martin is considered the founder of a new social science and cultural studies oriented book science. His best-known publications are "L´Apparition du livre" and the "Histoire de l'édition francaise". His work on the effect of text design and layout in the manuscript age became groundbreaking ("Mise en page et mise en text du livre manuscript", 1990). The book historian has repeatedly commented on Gutenberg research, especially on the distribution and impact of Gutenberg's invention in Europe. In 1998, Martin was the first Frenchman to receive the Gutenberg Prize of the City of Mainz and the International Gutenberg Society for his impressive life's work.