This article examines the physical interface of print and its role in translating beliefs not informed by a western theology of the imprint. A close reading of Jean Frédéric Bernard and Bernard Picart’s Cérémonies et coutumes religieuses (1723– 1743), with a focus on the section on religious practices in India, demonstrates the limitations of western typography and engraving in translating cultures formed outside of a material and physical history of the printed word and image.
Photo credits: 1, 2, 5, 8, 9 Public Domain, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. — 3 Public Domain, Cornell University Library, Ithaca. — 4 © Bibliothèque nationale de France. — 6, 7, 10 © The British Museum.
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