We have alluded to the advantages we enjoy in our days from the commonness of books, and from the knowledge which by their means is spread all over the world; and the sense of this advantage has led people to feel a great interest in all that concerned the inventor or discoverer of printing.
The city of Mainz especially, has always felt proud that he was born there, and, about two hundred years after his death, erected a statue to him in one of their streets. In 1837, however, another and a finer statue in bronze was erected, and the people of the town celebrated the event with all kinds of rejoicings and festivities. They liked to do honor to their ingenious and useful citizen, even though he had been dead nearly four hundred years, and they hung garlands of flowers on his statue, and had music and processions and illuminations—all to celebrate the memory of the son of the poor widow Gensfleisch.
No one who then looked upon the beautiful bronze statue of Gutenberg, or sees it now as it stands in the middle of the city of Mainz, can doubt for a moment that such a patient, persevering, and ingenious man, the inventor of such a great and useful an art, deserves better to have a statue raised to his memory, than any hero, king, or conqueror, that has ever yet existed.
[Footnote 1: The German for Mistress]
[Footnote 2: The style was a pointed instrument made of metal, and used for writing with by the ancients. Pens made of reeds were also used.]
[Footnote 3: In English Gooseflesh.]
A Story for Boys and Girls
“I wish the holidays, were here!” said Frank Grey, to his school-fellow, George Grant, “for I want so much to see ‘The Crystal Palace;’ and I know Grandma will take me, if I ask her.”
“Ah! it must be a jolly place, I’m sure,” said George; “but I shall never see it, I dare say.”
“Why not?” asked Frank; “just tell your Grandmother, and she will take you, too.”
“But I have no Grandmother,” said George, despondingly; “I never had, as long as I can recollect.”
“Oh! then I don’t know what you are to do, I’m sure,” said Frank; “unless you have an aunt or uncle who will take you: for you have no mother, have you?”
“Why, certainly, I have,” replied George, laughing, “and a father, too; but then he is always busy in the factory; and mother, she is mostly poorly, or shut up in the nursery with the little children, and often says, she’s sorry that she has neither time nor strength to take me sight-seeing.”
“That’s rather vexing, though,” said Frank, shaking his curly head. “I think I should not like to change with you; but that’s not bragging, is it.”