The other day I read an article in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) about an early Frankfurt book fair. I knew that before the war Leipzig and not Frankfurt was Germany's place for books but with the German division West Germany revived the Frankfurt Book Fair. Now my country has the luxury of two book fairs in times where paper books are more and more replaced by electronic media.
|Philipp Erasmus Reich (©Wikipedia)|
In fact, Reich buried an agonizing fair for in April 1764 only 34 publishers had been present in Frankfurt whereas in May of the same year 179 booksellers attended the Leipzig book fair. One reason of the change was that at the start of the 18th century modern German science and literature had moved to and was at home in the area between Hamburg, Berlin, Breslau, Jena, Halle, and Göttingen. Another reason was the fight of publishers against pirate editions. In South-West Germany, Switzerland and Austria printers had begun systematically to reprint books from Saxony, Prussia, Hannover, and Hamburg. An existing imperial system of protection did not work anymore. Since even the emperor in Vienna encouraged the pirating of books the imperial book inspector in Frankfurt turned out to be useless.
|Some of Red Baron's books arranged on IKEA's Billy shelf units|