The first printers could only print in one colour at a time, usually black. All the other colours had to be added later by hand. This is why the initial letters in the oldest printed books were drawn by hand, as in this Bible, printed in Delft in 1477. The text is in black, with hand-painted initials in red. The top line is also handwritten. This Delft Bible was published four years after the first dated book was printed in the Netherlands and is a monument of Dutch book printing.
Bible in duytsche. Delft, Jacob Jacobszoon van der Meer en Mauricius Yemantszoon, 10-1-1477. Den Haag, Meermanno: 001 D 015.
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