Thursday 10 November 2011

Apples have been around forever

Tonight's TV news report about the parlous state of the Italian economy included a shot of this sign, outside the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, a place I briefly visited in May. It was a strikingly modern sight in a city that's attractively historic - even if much of it is reconstructed history after the, ahem, last unpleasantness.

The city is grander than it should be because in 1949 Frankfurt expected to be made the new capital of Germany and was rather put out when the vote went to Bonn, especially since they'd already erected a bunch of fancy buildings and all. So instead it was made the financial centre, which has been a nice little earner for the city ever since.

The other big event for Frankfurt is its annual Book Fair, the biggest in the world, which it muscled in on claiming Gutenberg as their own, whereas he was actually a Mainz man. (New Zealand, incidentally, is going to be the guest of honour at next year's Fair, which means that there's going to be a lot of German attention focused on not just NZ literature, but the country as a whole.) It is true that he sold his first printed Bible there in the fifteenth century. There's a big statue of him and various city fathers in the main square, featuring bits of printing press, and I was most impressed by the sculptor's inspired vision of the future of books demonstrated by this woman holding an iPad.

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...