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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
The Brothers Foulis's Immaculate "Horace"


The celebrated brothers Foulis, university printers, Glasgow (1743-76), who have been deservedly named "the Elzevirs of Scotland," published an edition of Horace, 1744, which they purposed should be a perfect specimen of typographical accuracy; and every precaution was taken to secure the desired result. Six experienced proof-readers were employed, who devoted hours to the reading of each page; and after it was thought to be perfect, it was posted up in the hall of the University with a notification that a reward of fifty pounds would be paid to any person who would discover any error.

Each page was allowed to remain two weeks in the place where it had been posted, before that portion of the work was printed; and the printers thought that they had attained the object for which they had been striving; but unfortunately, when the work was issued, it was discovered that there were at least as many errors as the number of proof-readers who had been employed; one of which errors was in the very first line of the first page!

The Foulis editions of classical and other works are still very much prized by scholars and book collectors.


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