In recent times we have become so used to the incredible advancements regarding technologythat we often overlook them. We think it is no big deal for example that a small device is invented that can store thousands of different texts.
Additionally, nearly all of us assume 21st-century humanity has come up with such an idea. This assumption is false, however. Erik Kwakkel, a Medieval historian, as an example points out the back to back bindings of the 16th and 17th centuries. These back to back bindings combined different texts back to back, allowing the reader to read one text and flip the binding over to another text.
Six Books In One
Not long thereafter, Kwakkel posted an artifact that is significantly more impressive than these back to back bindings. The artifact is a book published in the 16th century that contains a minimum of six books in a single binding. The artifact was printed in Germany.
Kwakkel explains that while it was a challenge to keep track of a certain text’s location, a book that can be opened six different ways represents an impressive display in terms of craftsmanship. People can see and admire the book via the Royal Library archives at the National Library of Sweden.
Most of the people that found use for this type of book would have been highly literate and most likely a serious scholar. A typical citizen would have looked at such a multiple faceted text in complete awe. In today’s society, with a highly literate citizenry, people understand new technologies more and are less surprised by their impressiveness.