Venetian Decree on Press Affairs, Venice (1517)

Source: Scanned from the manuscript held in the Venetian State Archives: ASV, Senato, Terra, reg. 20, fol. 58v-59r.

Venetian Decree on Press Affairs, Venice (1517), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer,

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            Chapter 1 Page 1 of 2 total

 On the first August

It used to be the case that there was a vast number of printers of books here in our city
from which a revenue, by no means negligible, was exacted publicly and in private, in
addition to the benefit of the learned, who used to purchase those very books at less
expense than many [of these books] were printed. But verily from this time a practice
has prevailed, with the result that certain individuals who obtain privileges from Our
Dominion are preventing others from the path of printing the very same works;



De Primo Augusti

      Solebant esse in hac urbe nostra impressores librorum in maximo numero, ex quibus haud
modicum capiebatur vectigal, publice, et privatis praeter commodum studiosorum: qui ipsos
libros vilius emebant, quo plures imprimebantur: Verum certo ab hinc tempore consue-
tudo invaluit: ut quidam gratias impetrantes à Dominio nostro, aliis viam occludant imprimendi


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