Faust and Gutenberg

According to Czech legend, John Faust was a Bohemian necromancer, whose name was St’astný, the Czech word for happy, the Latin word for which is Faustus, and thence Faust. During the Hussite Wars, he moved to Germany, changed his name to Faust von Kuttenberg, after the town of his birth, Kutná Hora, and invented the printing press, entering history as Johann Gutenberg.

Jan Erazim Vocel, in his poem The Labyrinth of Flory, tells of how after the defeat of the Taborites in 1434 at the Battle of Lipany, Jan Kutenský, yet another name for Johann Kuttenberg/Gutenberg, devoted himself to alchemy, and in pursuit of knowledge, sold his soul to the devil Duchamor.  Ludmila, his beloved, sacrificed herself to free him from Duchamor’s clutches, and thereafter, Faust settled in Mainz and built the printing press.


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