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Scribal Publication in Seventeenth-Century England$
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Harold Love

Print publication date: 1993

Print ISBN-13: 9780198112198

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198112198.001.0001

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The Social Uses of the Scribally Published Text

The Social Uses of the Scribally Published Text

(p.177) 5 The Social Uses of the Scribally Published Text
Scribal Publication in Seventeenth-Century England

Harold Love

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the societal functions of the handwritten text. It also examines the function of scribal publication as a means by which ideologically charged texts could be distributed through the governing class, or various interest-groups within that class, without their coming to the knowledge of the governed. This class constitutes the court and its officials, the aristocracy with their families and clients, gentry, merchants concerned in the financing of state enterprises, and the upper hierarchical levels of the law, medicine, church, army, and navy. It explores the internal structure of the governing class, sustained by two forms of exclusion — the vertical and the horizontal form. It also talks about topics such as censorship and the scribal text, the script as a medium of information, and the sites for reading — the coffee and country houses, the court, the Haward miscellany, the universities, and the inns of court.

Keywords:   handwritten text, scribal publication, governing class, vertical form, horizontal form, censorship, reading sites

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