The invention of Movable-Type Printing in the work of Shen Kuo (1031-1095)

Luciano Agustín Di Doménico, Federico Daniel Mina, Gustavo E. Santillán


This article analyses the jotting n° 307 of the book “Brush Talks from Dream Brook”
(Mengxi Bitan), by the scholar Shen Kuo (1031-1095). That jotting presents, by first time in History, the
movable-type printing invention. Our analysis of this jotting relates the exposition made by Shen Kuo
with the social context of its time, as well as with Shen Kuo’s own personal trajectory as scholar-official
of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). The performed examination reveals that Shen Kuo highlights
the movable-type printing invention based on its recurrent interest for technical developments; also, it
is concluded that the above-mentioned interest must not be isolated from Shen Kuo´s trajectory within
the Court, and, finally, that book printing was a noteworthy phenomenon in the society of Shen’s times,
for both socioeconomic and political reasons.


Shen Kuo; Mengxi Bitan; Movable-type Printing; Song Dynasty.

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Sinología hispánica. Revisión de estudios de China

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ISSN 2444-832X (Ed. Impresa)

eI.SSN 2531-2219

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