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Plantin-Moretus Museum: Detail, small interior staircase with carved newel post
Baroque ornament became characteristic on the houses of the wealthy, but it was generally applied to existing Renaissance structures. Often the decoration on larger hôtels was concentrated around a courtyard, presenting an unobtrusive façade to the outside world. Fine examples are the pure Renaissance Plantin-Moretus House. In a 34-year career Christoph Plantin printed ca. 2540 editions covering religion, law, history, science, languages and humanistic texts. The Officina Plantiniana (his press, which had been continued by his son-in-law Jan Moretus) was finally sold to the city of Antwerp in 1867 by Edward Moretus-Plantin and opened as the Plantin-Moretus Museum in 1876. It contains the two oldest surviving printing presses in the world and complete sets of dies and matrices. It also has an extensive library, a richly decorated interior and the entire archives of the Plantin business. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.