New in Special Collections: Benjamin Franklin’s best work

cato majorSpecial Collections’ newest acquisition for our History of Printing collection is a copy of M. T. Cicero’s Cato Major, printed by Benjamin Franklin in 1744. The text was translated by James Logan, a prominent colonial statesman and book collector. Logan served as mayor of Philadelphia and as Chief Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and with Franklin was one of the founders of the Library Company of Philadelphia.

M. T. Cicero’s Cato Major is often cited as the finest example of American printing in the colonial period. It features imported Italian paper stock and a large, clear typeface. It joins several other examples of Franklin’s presswork at Special Collections.

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