British Library Treasures in full: Gutenberg Bible
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An autograph is a manuscript written by the author of the text

Giovanni Boccaccio, (1313?-1375) an Italian author now mainly famous for the Decameron

A facsimile is a book which is an exact copy of the original

A letter of indulgence grants forgiveness for all or some of the buyer’s sins, in return for payment and in principle conditional on repentance

The liturgy is the collection of formulas and other texts which make up the religious services of the Christian church

A manuscript is a handwritten book

A mercer is a merchant who deals in textiles

Penances were the punishments imposed by the Church on people after they had confessed their sins. They were generally fasts, sexual continence, pilgrimages or floggings. In the 15th century it was increasingly common to pay money instead of performing the penance.

The vernacular languages are the languages actually spoken by a group of people, often in contrast to Latin and ancient Greek.


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