An early case of the printer's self-censorship in Constantinople

Nil Palabiyik

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This article focuses on the printing activities of Nicodemos Metaxas, a Venetian subject and Orthodox monk of Greek origin, hailing from the Ionian island of Cephalonia. Nicodemos learned the art of printing in London's Fleet Street and published five volumes, forming an exquisite collection of theological and rhetorical works by select Greek scholars and Orthodox clergymen. In 1627, he established the first Greek printing press in Constantinople with equipment transferred from England. The editing process of Patriarch Cyril Lucaris's Against the Jews, a tract Nicodemos published in the same year, reveals a curious example of the printer's self-censorship. The official Ottoman stance towards non-Muslim publishing in the Empire is manifested through the arrest, trial, and subsequent release of the Greek printer.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-404
Number of pages24
JournalThe Library: the transactions of the Bibliographical Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015


  • 17th Century

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • John Rylands Research Institute and Library


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