George Anderson (fl. 1637-1647)
Detail from title-page of Bh12-f.8
George Anderson set up the first
press in Glasgow in 1638, at the invitation of the Town Council and the
University. He printed two items that year.
Anderson had previously been a printer in Edinburgh where he had
undertaken a considerable amount of work for the Church of Scotland.
After his move to Glasgow, he produced many works for the General
Assembly of the Church of Scotland, which provided a steady source of income
for him. Much of his output was also University related. Although he was
never officially appointed as University printer, the accounts record at
least one payment to him in 1638 - for 33 pounds, 6 shillings and 8
Anderson was particularly encouraged by Zachary Boyd (1585?-1653),
who was for some time the Vice Chancellor. He printed several of his
Active in Glasgow until 1647 when he died, Anderson's business was
inherited by his widow. She returned to Edinburgh, although for several
years following occasional books were issued from her press - the "heirs
of George Anderson" - with the imprint "Printed at Glasgow" (including
another work by Zachary Boyd). She was succeeded by her son, Andrew
Anderson, in 1653.
Bh12-f.8: opening of text
Bh12-f.8: final page
|The Protestation of the Generall Assemblie of the Church of
Scotland, and of the noblemen ... and commons; subscribers of the
Covenant, lately renewed, made in the High Kirk, and at the Mercate
Crosse of Glasgow, the 28 and 29 of November 1638
Glasgow: Printed at Glasgow by George Anderson, in the Yeare of
Sp Coll Bh12-f.8
This is a tract that argues against the proclamation
of 29 November 1638 dissolving the General Assembly of the Church of
Scotland. The text was written by Archibald Johnston, Lord Warriston.
BD1-i.48 (vol. 1): title-page
BD1-i.48 (vol. 1): p. 108
|Zachary Boyd The garden of Zion: wherein the
life and death of godly and wicked men in Scriptures are to be seene,
from Adam unto the last of the Kings of Judah and Israel, with the good
uses of their life and death
Glasgow by George Anderson, 1644
Sp Coll BD1-i.48-49 (2 vols)
Boyd had several religious works printed by the new Glasgow press,
both in prose and metrical verse. This is a collection of his verse.
He left a substantial amount of money, as well as his library, to the
University. Some of this money was to go towards new buildings, but
a substantial amount was earmarked "for printing of my works". However,
these manuscripts were never published.
Mu32-h.32: opening pp. 147-148
|John Row Chilias Hebraica: seu, vocabularium continens praecipuas
radices linguae Hebraeae, numero 1000 ... item rudimenta pietatis
Hebraïcè descripta cum interpretatione
Glasguae Excudebat Georgius Andersonus, Anno Christogonias M.DC.XLIV. 
Sp Coll Mu36-h.32
This Hebrew grammar and vocabulary,
showing the roots of Hebrew words, was the first
book printed in Scotland to use Hebrew type. Its 18th century binding is
of a Scottish herringbone design made up of "turnip" shaped tools.
Andrew Anderson (fl. 1653-1676)
Detail of imprint from BE6-e.24
|Glasgow was left without a printer for
several years following the return of Mrs Anderson to Edinburgh.
Eventually her son and heir, Andrew Anderson, was persuaded to
re-establish a press in Glasgow.
For this, the city would pay him annually "the soume of ane hundreth
merkis Scottis money". Anderson settled in Glasgow in 1657. His salary
for 1660, however, was not paid and he therefore returned to Edinburgh
in 1661. Here he continued to work, being appointed as printer to the
town and college in 1663, and as King's printer for Scotland in 1671 -
this gave him a virtual monopoly in printing certain kinds of books such
The quality of his work is questionable, however: in 1671, he was
ordered by the Privy Council of Scotland to withdraw an edition of the
New Testament on account of its many errors; this was not to be
reissued until corrected. Meanwhile, Robert Baille (1599-1662), the
Principal of the University of Glasgow, complained during this period of
Latin books being "exceedingly ill done" and resorted to sending his own works to Holland to be printed.
|Sylvester Rattray Aditus novus ad occultas sympathiae et
antipathiae causas inveniendas per principia philosophiae naturalis, ex
fermentorum artificiosa anatomia hausta, patefactus
Glasguae, excudebat Andreas Anderson, Anno Dom 1658
Sp Coll Ferguson Ak-e.61
This work was one of the first to be printed
by Andrew Anderson in Glasgow. Sylvester Rattray (fl.
1650–1666) was a doctor and medical writer.
|An ceud chaogad do shalmaibh Dhaibhidh, ar a dtarring as an
eabhra, a meadar dhana gaoidhilg, le seanadh earraghaoidheal. Neoch a
dorduigh an seinm a neaglaisaibh, agus a dteaghlichaibh, a ghnathuigheas
an chanamhain sin is na criochaibh ceudna
Do chuireadh so a
Glasgow: Andrew Anderson, 1659
Sp Coll BE6-e.24
According to MacLehose, a University imprint appeared for the first time on a
graduation thesis printed by Andrew Anderson in 1659 - no copy has been
found in Special Collections.
This volume contains Gaelic versions of
the First Fifty Psalms of David and the Shorter Catechism. Although
both dated 1659, there is no association with the University in
Robert Sanders, the Elder (fl. 1656-1694)
Bi3-l.11: detail of decorative letter 'u' from page 1
|Robert Sanders was the eldest son of James Sanders, a Glasgow
stationer. He was appointed as a printer by the town soon after Andrew
Anderson's departure to Edinburgh in 1661. He was to be paid regular
sums of money in return for producing "gratis any thing short the toune
shall imploy him to print". Like his father, Sanders was also a
bookseller and bookbinder.
Having been appointed as printer to the
town in 1662, Sanders was describing
himself as "Urbis et Universitatis Typographus" (Printer to the City and
University) some ten years later. There is some conjecture as
to exactly when he was made University printer. He is styled
as "Urbis & Univers. Typographus" in one book dated 1667, but MacLehose
speculates that this is a misprint and suggests that 1672 is more likely
to be the real date of his appointment.
Sanders printed books regularly for the University until 1683. In
this year, he manouevred himself into becoming one of His Majesty's
printers by purchasing from George Swinton his share in the Royal patent
to print in Scotland. This followed years of battling with Andrew
Anderson and his widow and heirs over this lucrative privilege.
Unfortunately, however, the dispute went on, diverting Sanders from his work:
according to MacLehose, it "seriously affected" the output of the
|Jean Calvin The institution of Christian religion
Imprinted at London by Anne Griffin, for Joyce Norton, and R. Whitaker, 1634
Sp Coll Mu42-a.11
This volume was published before Sanders took up
printing but it is interesting as an example of his binding work. A
manuscript note inside this volume records that it was bound by him at
Glasgow in 1660.
Bi3-l.11: page 1
|Sylvester Rattray Prognosis medica, ad usum praxeos
facili methodo digesta
Glasguae, excudebat Robertus Sanders, Typographus Urbis. M.DC.LXVI 
Sp Coll Bi3-l.11
Another work by the medical writer Sylvester Rattray.
At this point, Sanders is still just describing himself in the imprint
as the City's printer. The manuscript inscription on the title-page
records that is was bought for the University Library in 1699.
Mu47-e.26: title page
Mu47-e.26: leaf 2r
|Thomas Bell Roma restituta
Glasguae, excudebat Robertus Sanders, Urbis & Academiae Typographus.
Sp Coll Mu47-e.26
This is the first work definitely known to have been printed by Sanders with a University imprint.
It is a book about the administration and customs of classical Rome. The
final page contains a list of corrections to the text: an early reader
in this copy has gone through the book and made the necessary changes,
adding a note "correcta sunt".
RB 3024: title-page
|William Dyer Christ's famous titles, and a believer's golden
chain. Handled in divers sermons
Glasgow, by Robert Sanders, Printer to the City and University, and are
to be sold, in his shop, 1678
Sp Coll RB 3024
This collection of evangelical religious tracts has
been noted for its radical statements. According to the imprint, Sanders
both printed the volume and sold the text in his bookshop.
Robert Sanders, the Younger, of Auldhouse
MS Gen 38: detail of print ornament and author's
|Robert Sanders "the younger" succeeded his father in 1694. He
inherited his "unbound books, and materials for printing" and his mother
inherited the bound volumes. They quarrelled after Mrs Sanders had
much of the stock hastily bound up so that she could claim it under the terms of
the will. Sanders also inherited the disputed patent to print; he
continued to describe himself as one of his Majesty's printers until
about 1706, as well as occasionally using the University imprint.
By the end of the 17th century, the University Printer was an
official appointment, with accommodation being provided in the College. The books published during this period were marred by poor
workmanship, however, and have generally been derided for their inaccuracies and
bad presswork. MacLehose states that Sanders the younger "did not add
to, nor even sustain, the moderate reputation as a printer which his
father had made". Another writer1
remarks that "printing was now, and for some years afterwards, in the
lowest state in Scotland".
MS Gen 38: title-page
|Calendarium Lunae perpetuum
Glasguae, excudebat Robertus Sanders, unus è Regiis
Typographis, & prostant apud Biblioplas ibidem; pretium libri in schdis
8, asses scot. Anno Dom. 1699.
Sp Coll MS Gen 38
This printed calendar is shelved in our manuscripts
sequence as it has further tables, sermons and other documents in
manuscript appended to it by John
McCaull. McCaull studied at the University of Glasgow and was a minister
of the Church of Scotland at Withern (1712-1741). This book was
presented to him by the author in 1702.
|John Toldervy The foot out of the snare
Printed at London, and reprinted at
Glasgow, by Robert Sanders, Printer to the City, & University, & are to
be sold in his shop, 1679
Sp Coll Mu39-f.6
MacLehose states that this reprint is one of "many
books, most of them small and unimportant" issued by Sanders the