The Cummington Press

The Book of Job from the King James Bible.
Cummington, Massachusetts: Cummington Press, 1944.

Woodcuts by Gustav Wolf – Printed by Harry Duncan with the assistance of Gustav Wolf – Binding by Hicks of Oxford

In contrast to the Grabhorn Press, the Cummington Press consciously chose not to lay out the text of the Book of Job as verse. The book’s colophon reads: “It may seem inconsistent that an edition in which the Book is claimed as a poem should print it like prose; but the rhythms in which we have it are unequivocally and richly those of prose, whereas the verse-units, being grammatical, are easily apprehended without lineation.”

This edition of the Book of Job illustrates importance to printers of the selection of source text. While the title proclaims that the source is the King James Bible, the book’s colophon explains that the printed text was created from a comparison of two previously printed Bibles, one from 1878 and one published in 1943, but one year prior to the production of this edition.

The Cummington Press was the school press of the Cummington School of the Arts and was founded by the school’s director, Katharine Frazier. Frazier passed away in 1944, the same year the book was published. The Press paid tribute to Frazier in the book’s colophon.

The text was set in Monotype Poliphilus and Blado, and the press declared in the colophon that upon completion the types would be melted down or distributed. The Book of Job was printed in an edition of three hundred copies. The copy on display is numbered 66.

The Old Testament - Job
The Cummington Press