Books in Germany


As of 2018, ten firms in Germany rank among the world's biggest publishers of books in terms of revenue: C.H. Beck, Bertelsmann, Cornelsen Verlag [de], Haufe-Gruppe [de], Holtzbrinck Publishing Group, Ernst Klett Verlag [de], Springer Nature, Thieme, WEKA Holding [de], and Westermann Druck- und Verlagsgruppe.[1][note 1] Overall, "Germany has some 2,000 publishing houses, and more than 90,000 titles reach the public each year, a production surpassed only by the United States."[4] Unlike many other countries, "book publishing is not centered in a single city but is concentrated fairly evenly in Berlin, Hamburg, and the regional metropolises of Cologne, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, and Munich."[4]


In the 1450s in Mainz, Johannes Gutenberg printed a Bible using movable metal type, a technique that quickly spread to other German towns and throughout Europe.[5]

In the 1930s Nazis conducted book burnings.

German publishers issued around 61,000 book titles in 1990, and around 83,000 in 2000.[6]

Recent historians of the book in Germany include Bernhard Fabian [de] and Paul Raabe [de].[7]


The influential Frankfurt Book Fair began in 1454, and the Leipzig Book Fair in 1632.


Outside of Germany, collections of German books include those stored in the UK at the British Library[8] and London Library;[9] in the US at Harvard University[10] and Yale University.[11]

In popular culture

In 2006 a temporary sculpture about German book history was installed at Bebelplatz in Berlin as part of the Walk of Ideas.

See also


  1. ^ Of these, several also topped the list in 2016 and 2017.[2][3]


  1. ^ "The World's 54 Largest Publishers, 2018", Publishers Weekly, US, 265 (38), 14 September 2018
  2. ^ "World's 52 Largest Book Publishers, 2016", Publishers Weekly, US, 26 August 2016
  3. ^ "World's 54 Largest Publishers, 2017", Publishers Weekly, US, 25 August 2017
  4. ^ a b "Germany: Media and Publishing". Retrieved 26 November 2017.
  5. ^ Proctor 1898.
  6. ^ Euromedia 2004.
  7. ^ Raven, James (2018). What is the History of the Book?. Cambridge, England: Polity Press. ISBN 9780745641614.
  8. ^ "German Printed Collections, 1501-1850". Help for Researchers. UK: British Library. Retrieved 8 December 2017.
  9. ^ "Guide to German Collections" (PDF). UK: London Library. Retrieved 8 December 2017. (Describes German-language holdings)
  10. ^ James Walsh (1985). "Twenty Years of German Collection Building, 1966-1986". Harvard Library Bulletin. US. 33. ISSN 0017-8136. + Wieck, Roger (1981). "Exhibition of German Illustrated Books from the Sixteenth Century". Harvard Library Bulletin. 29. Free to read
  11. ^ "Collections: German Literature". US: Yale University Library. Retrieved 8 December 2017.
This article incorporates information from the German Wikipedia.


in English

  • G.W. Porter; G.K. Fortescue, eds. (1889). "Bibliographies of Countries: Germany". List of Bibliographical Works in the Reading Room of the British Museum (2nd ed.). London. OCLC 3816244 – via Internet Archive.
  • Robert Proctor (1898). "Books Printed From Types: Germany". Index to the Early Printed Books in the British Museum. London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner and Company. pp. 29+. hdl:2027/uc1.c3450631. OCLC 6438080 – via HathiTrust.. Part 2
  • Alice Bertha Kroeger; Isadore Gilbert Mudge (1917). "Bibliography: National and Trade: German". Guide to the Study and Use of Reference Books (3rd ed.). American Library Association.
  • Albert Ward (1974). Book production, fiction and the German reading public: 1740-1800. Clarendon Press. ISBN 0198181574.
  • Ronald A. Fullerton (1977). "Creating a Mass Book Market in Germany: The Story of the "Colporteur Novel" 1870-1890". Journal of Social History. 10 (3): 265–283. doi:10.1353/jsh/10.3.265. JSTOR 3786389.
  • Allen Kent; et al., eds. (1978). "Printers and Printing". Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science. 23. Marcel Dekker. ISBN 978-0-8247-2023-0. (Includes info about Germany)
  • P. Weidhaas (1995). "Germany". In Philip G. Altbach; Edith S. Hoshino (eds.). International Book Publishing: An Encyclopedia. Garland. ISBN 9781134261260.
  • John Sandford, ed. (1999). Encyclopedia of Contemporary German Culture. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-136-81603-1. (Includes articles about book clubs, publishing, etc.)
  • "Germany: Directory: Publishers". Europa World Year Book. Europa Publications. 2004. ISBN 978-1-85743-254-1.
  • Euromedia Research Group; Mary Kelly; et al., eds. (2004). "Germany: Book Publishing". Media in Europe (3rd ed.). Sage Publications. p. 81+. ISBN 978-0-7619-4132-3.
  • Gideon Reuveni (2006). Reading Germany: Literature and Consumer Culture in Germany Before 1933. Berghahn Books. ISBN 978-1-84545-087-8.
  • John L. Flood (2013). "Germany". In Michael F. Suarez; H. R. Woudhuysen (eds.). The Book: A Global History. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-967941-6.
  • "Would You Like Some Sausage With Your Novel?", New York Times, 22 September 2018

in German

  • Allgemeines Bücher-Lexicon [General Book List] (in German), Heinsius [de], 1793–1798, OCLC 491343885
  • Verzeichniß neuer Bücher [Directory of New Books] (in German), Leipzig: Hinrichs [de], 1794–1822, OCLC 894883757
  • Christian Gottlob Kayser [it] (1834–1911), Vollständiges Bücher-Lexicon [Complete Book List] (in German), OCLC 496011129CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  • Archiv für Geschichte des Buchwesens [de] [Archive for the History of the Book] (in German), ISSN 0066-6327 1958-
  • Reinhard Wittmann [de] (1991). Geschichte des deutschen Buchhandels: ein Uberblick [History of the German Book Trade: an Overview] (in German). ISBN 3406354254.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  • Jäger, Georg (2013-02-07). Geschichte des deutschen Buchhandels im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert [History of the German book trade in the 19th and 20th centuries] (in German). ISBN 978-3-11-095617-7. Multiple volumes, 2001-


  • How to Make a Book with Steidl, 2010; about Steidl publisher in Göttingen


External links