In the great freeze of 1740, the printer of York, Thomas Gent set up his printing press on the frozen river Ouse and produced this hand bill as a memento of the event. The border ornament incorporates the arms of Amsterdam. Prov.: York Minster Library, York.
The image above is a reproduction from a photocopy. Do you want to see the original handbill as it can be seen in an exhibition case in the Minster Library of York?
In January 1739, the frost having been extremely intense, the rivers became so frozen, that I printed names upon the ice. It was a dangerous spot on the south side of the bridge, where I first set up, as it were, a new kind of press, only a roller wrapt about with blankets. Whilst reading the verses I had made to follow the names, wherein King George was most loyally inserted, some soldiers round about made great acclamations, with other good people; but the ice suddenly crackling, they almost as quickly run away, whilst I, who then did not hear well, neither guessed the meaning, fell to work, and wondered at them as much for retiring so precipitately as they at me for staying: but taking courage, they stoutly returned back, brought company, and I took some pence amongst them. After this, I moved my shop to and fro, to the great satisfaction of young gentlemen, ladies, and others, who were very liberal on the occasion. [Here is introduced a long and uninteresting account of the manner in which he was deprived of the house in Stonegate, which was held under a prebendal lease. JH]. Fra Thomas Gents dagbog
The life of Thomas Gent, printer of York
The York Minster Official web site
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The walls of York
Publiceret på internettet 27. juni 1999 af . Opdateret 29. december 2002 og 2. oktober 2012.