Johann Heinrich Zedler

Johann Heinrich Zedler (7 January 1706 in Breslau (now Wrocław, Poland) – 21 March 1751 in Leipzig) was a bookseller and publisher. His most important achievement was the creation of a German encyclopedia, the ''Grosses Universal-Lexicon (Great Universal Lexicon)'', the largest and most comprehensive German-language encyclopedia developed in the 18th century.

After training as a bookseller, Zedler founded his own publishing house in 1726. It was initially based in Freiberg, Upper Saxony, and in 1727 moved to the Publishing and Book Trade Center in Leipzig. His first major publication was an eleven volume edition of the writings of Martin Luther published between 1729 and 1734, with an index volume published in 1740. As the founding publisher of the ''Universal Lexicon'', started in 1731 and during his lifetime growing to a total of 64 volumes, Zedler got into a long-standing legal dispute with the established publishers in Leipzig, whose more specialized products were threatened.

Some time before the spring of 1737, Zedler suffered a financial collapse. His business was bought by the Leipzig businessman Johann Heinrich Wolf. Wolf provided funding for Zedler to continue with the ''Universal Lexicon'' and other works he had already begun such as the ''General Chronicle of States, Wars, Churches and Scholarship'' (1733–1754, 22 volumes). Zedler also published new works such as the trade lexicon ''Allgemeine Schatz-Kammer Der Kaufmannschafft'' (1741–1743, 4 volumes and 1 supplement volume), stock exchange laws ''Corpus Juris Cambialis'' (Johann Gottlieb Siegels, 1742, 2 volumes) and the ''Historical-Political-Geographical Atlas of the whole world'' (1744–1749, 13 volumes), published under the name of the Leipzig bookseller, Johann Samuel Heinsius the Elder.

Zedler died at the age of 45 in 1751, just a year after the conclusion of the alphabetic ''Universal-Lexicon''. His name lives on with the colloquial name of the encyclopedia, which is known today as "the Zedler". Provided by Wikipedia
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by Luther, Martin 1483-1546
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by Luther, Martin 1483-1546
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