History of Paper - Timeline 1000 - 1500


- Years -
< 500 | 500 - 1000 | 1000 - 1500 |1500 >

1009 CE Mohammedans sack the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem.
  1549 Spanish missionary Diego de Landa burned the library of the Mayas in Mani. The Mayas were making a sort of bark paper as early as the ninth century.

1550 Probably date of the origin and use of marbled papers, a Persian invention.

1027  Omar Khayyam, Persian poet and scientist, born.
1035 Persian traveller Nasiri Khosrau, on a visit to Cairo, was astonished to see "sellers of vegetables, spices, hardware, provided with paper in which all they sold was immediately wrapped up, if it were not so already." Perhaps the earliest recorded instance of "packaging."
1052 Edward the Confessor begins building Westminster Abbey.
1066 Battle of Hastings; Normans conquer England.
1096 First Crusade.
1100 Paper mill established at Fez in Morocco, having been introduced from Egypt; paper used in Istanbul.
c.1100 The dialect of the Ile-de-France becomes the prevailing idiom of France, and Middle English supersedes Old English.
1102 Paper used in Sicily.
1109 Earliest existing European manuscript on paper (Sicily), a deed of King Roger, written in Arabic and Greek.
1126 Averroės, Arab scholar and philosopher, born.


1147 According to legend, Jean Montgolfier on the Second Crusade was taken prisoner by Saracens and forced to labor in a Damascus paper mill. He is supposed to have returned to France and in 1157 set up a papermaking establishment in Vidalon.
1150 First papermill established in Spain at Xativa. El-Edrisi said of the Spanish city of Xįtiva: "Paper is there manufactured, such as cannot be found anywhere else in the civilized world, and is sent to the East and to the West." Early paper was at first disfavored by the Christian world as a manifestation of Moslem culture, and a 1221 decree from Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II declared all official documents written on paper to be invalid. (The interests of wealthy European landowners in sheep and cattle for parchment and vellum may also have exerted some influence.) Only with the rise of the printing press in the mid 1400's change European attitudes toward paper.
1162 Genghis Khan born; Thomas ą Becket elected Archbishop of Canterbury.
1163 Building of Notre Dame in Paris begins.
1178 Snorri Sturluson, Icelandic poet and historian, born.
1191 Tea arrives in Japan from China.
1215 Magna Carta signed by King John.
1227 Building of Toledo Cathedral begins in Spain; the Japanese potter Toshiro returns home from China and starts porcelain manufacture.
1228 Paper used in Germany.
1268 Paper made at Fabriano, where it is still being made.
1271-72 Marco Polo sets off for Cathay.
13th cent. Papermaking reaches Southern Italy, where until recently, some of the oldest handmade paper mills in Italy were operating near Amalfi, in the Naples area. First mention of the Fabriano, Italy, paper mills (1276). First mill established in Bologna, Italy (1293).
1282 By this year Florence has become the leading European city in commerce and finance.
1282 Watermarks used in Europe for the first time. They consisted of simple crosses and circles (Italy).
1289 Block printing practiced in Ravenna.
1290 Invention of spectacles.
1300 Dante and Giotto flourish.
1309 Paper used in England.
1313 Gunpowder invented.
1315 Lyons silk industry developed by Italian immigrants.
1322 Paper used in Holland.
1327  The Aztecs establish Mexico City.
1328 Invention of the sawmill.
1337 Animal sizing first used in Europe.
c.1340 Geoffrey Chaucer born.
1348 Paper made in France (Troyes).
139 Paper made by Ulman Stromer of Germany (Nuremberg), with the assistance of Italian craftsmen. A woodcut of this mill is given in Schedel's Nurnberg Chronicle,1493.
1396 Manuel Chrysoloras opens Greek classes in Florence: beginning of revival of Greek literature in Italy.
1405 In Flanders a papermaker named Jean L'Espagnol mentioned at Huy, probably the first papermaker in this locality.
1414 The Medici of Florence become bankers to the papacy.
1428 Paper made in Holland.
1431 Joan of Arc burned to death at Rouen; Brunelleschi devises the cupola for the Florence Cathedral.
1433 Paper made in Switzerland.
1450 Vatican Library founded; Florence under the Medici becomes center of Renaissance humanism; and Mocha in southwestern Arabia becomes main port for coffee export.
1450-55 Johann Gutenberg's 42-line Bible produced. The beginning of book printing in Europe and the beginning of the use of paper on a comparatively large scale. The paper used in the printing of this Bible has never been excelled for durability and remains to this day a monument to the papermaking craft.
1461 Leonardo da Vinci becomes a pupil of Verrocchio.
1463 Pico de Mirandola, Italian humanist born.
1465 Erasmus of Rotterdam, European humanist, born. Music printed for the first time.
1470 Bookseller's advertisement issued by Peter Schoeffer is considered to be the first printed poster upon paper to be produced in Europe.
1473 Nicolaus Copernicus born.
1476 William Caxton sets up first printing shop in Westminster. All of the paper used by Caxton was brought from the Low Countries.
1480 Anthony Koberger, printer of Nuremberg, distributed a printed circular to his customer, probably the first use of this form of advertising.
1491 Paper made in Poland. By 1546 there were thirty-five paper mills in Poland.
1492 Columbus sailed from Spain to the New World; Granada conquered by the Spanish and extinguish the Moorish kingdom; Torquemada gives order that Spanish Jews have three months to accept Christianity or leave the country.
1493 Nurnberg Chronicle issued by Schedel. In the double-page image of the city of Nurnberg is shown a small picture of the Ulman Stromer paper mill (lower right corner). This was the first picture of a paper mill to be used in a European book.
1494-5 Paper first made in England by John Tate, in Hertfordshire. The first printer to make use of Tate paper was Wynken de Worde (1496).
1495 First watermark in England.
1495 Leonardo da Vinci begins "The Last Supper."
1497 Cabot reached Canada; Amerigo Vespucci disputes Columbus' claims.
1498 Vasco da Gama reaches India; Savonarola burned as a heretic in Florence; Michelangelo sculpts "Pietą in St. Peter's.
1500 First black-lead pencils used in England.

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