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Fabvlarvm Ovidii Interpretation, Ethica, Physica,…
Ovid (43 bce – 17 or 18 ce)
Cantabrigiae: ex officina Thomae Thomae, 1584
PA6519 M2 1584

The University of Cambridge was granted printer’s privileges through a Royal Letters Patent by Henry VIII in 1534. Although it held privilege, the Cambridge press did not actually begin printing until 1582/3, after the appointment of Thomas Thomas as University Printer. At the time, the Stationers’ Company in London held a carefully monitored monopoly on printing in England. So fierce was the Stationers’ Company sense of competition, it arranged to have Thomas’ press seized.

Thomas, a fellow of King’s College and notable scholar, was the author of a Latin dictionary which was issued in at least eight editions from the Cambridge press before 1610.  He printed at least twenty titles for the press before his death in 1588 at the age of thirty-five.

The University of Cambridge Press is the world’s oldest continually operating press and publisher. Its first book was printed in 1584, making this 1584 Ovid one of its first publications.