Johannes of Speyer's Printing Monopoly, Venice (1469)

Source: scanned from the manuscript held in the Venetian State Archives: ASV, NC, reg. 11, c. 55r

Citation:
Johannes of Speyer's Printing Monopoly, Venice (1469), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer, www.copyrighthistory.org

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Record-ID: i_1469

Permanent link: http://www.copyrighthistory.org/record/i_1469

Full title:
Printing monopoly granted to a German master printer, Johannes of Speyer, conceding a five-year exclusive right to print in Venice and its dominions

Full title original language:
N/A

Abstract:
The first known record of a printing privilege granted by a European government. Unique in the history of Venetian copyright, for it concedes an extensive commercial monopoly over the entire art of printing. The commentary describes the early laissez-faire attitudes of the government towards the printing trade which combined with the natural play of economic forces to foster a thoroughly capitalistic structure of the book market in Venice. From this point of view, the emerging system of printing privileges could be defined as a primitive legal mechanism for the construction and maintenance of property and the re-introduction of scarcity into the book market.

1 Commentary:
commentary_i_1469

Bibliography:
  • Pozza, Neri, 'L'editoria Veneziana da Giovanni da Spira ad Aldo Manuzio', in 'La stampa degli incunaboli nel Veneto, Saggi e note' (Verona: Tipografia Editoriale Aldo Manuzio, 1983), 9-35

  • Gerulaitis, Leonardas V., 'Printing and Publishing in fifteenth-century Venice' (Chicago: American Library Association, 1976)

  • Castellani, Carlo, 'I privilegi di stampa e la proprietà letteraria in Venezia: Dalla introduzione della stampa nella città fin verso la fine del secolo XVIII' (Venice: Fratelli Visentini, 1888)

  • Brown, Horatio Fortini, 'The Venetian Printing Press 1469-1800: An Historical Study Based upon Documents for the Most Part Hitherto Unpublished' (London: John C. Nimmo, 1891)


Related documents in this database:
1474: Venetian Statute on Industrial Brevets
1486: Marco Antonio Sabellico's Printing Privilege
1498: Ottaviano Petrucci's Music Patent
1503: Aldus Manutius's Warning against the Printers of Lyon
1516: Appointment of Andrea Navagero as Literary Censor
1527: Venetian Decree on Pre-publication Censorship

Author: N/A

Publisher: N/A

Year: 1469

Location: Venice

Language: Latin

Source: scanned from the manuscript held in the Venetian State Archives: ASV, NC, reg. 11, c. 55r

Persons referred to:
Cicero, Marcus Tullius
Contarini, Bertuccio
Dandolo, Francesco
Gradenigo, Angelo
Johannes of Speyer
Morosini, Giacopo
Pliny 'the Elder'
Venerio, Angelo

Places referred to:
Venice

Cases referred to:
N/A

Institutions referred to:
Venetian Senate

Legislation:
N/A

Keywords:
Università di Stampatori e Librai (Venetian Guild of Printers and Booksellers)
book market
book trade
censorship
classics, Greek and Latin
free trade
inventions
manuscript
monopoly
patents, for invention
penalties
printing, history of
privileges, Venetian
translations, of classic works
typography

Responsible editor: Joanna Kostylo


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Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge, 10 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DZ, UK