# Primary Sources on Copyright - Record Viewer
Crébillon case, Paris (1749)

Source: Bibliothèque nationale de France : Mss. Fr. 22072 n°112

Crébillon case, Paris (1749), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer, www.copyrighthistory.org

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certain Individuals claiming to be his Creditors, have had
the temerity of having had carried out, as much from the
hands of the Comédiens Français, due to his Author's part
in the proceeds of the Representations of the Tragedy of
Catilina, as from those of Mr Prault son, Bookseller, with
whom he dealt with the Printing of the same Play. The Supplicant,
without resorting to absolute demurrers that he would have the
right to oppose against the claims of these Individuals,
contents himself with observing that it is incredible that one
has ever endeavoured to place in the rank of seizable Effects
the fruit of the products of the human mind; that if such an
abuse could be introduced, there would arise a notable inconvenience,
in that those who have consecrated their late nights to the Study
of Letters, & that have made the greatest efforts by this means
to render themselves useful to their Country, will find themselves
in the cruel position of not daring to bring to light their Works,
often precious & interesting for the State: Indeed, no one can ignore
that the majority of those that devote themselves to Literature, need,
to live, the benefits that they have the right to expect from their
work, & that it would be of dangerous consequence for the Public that
they remain deprived of these by the effect of the prosecutions that
they would daily be exposed to if their Creditors were authorized
to claim them for their profit. It is for such commendable motives
that one has never tolerated in France the seizure of the fees of
Lawyers & other persons of liberal Profession. The Supplicant requests
FOR THESE REASONS, that it pleases His Majesty to evoke to himself &
to his Council the instances de préférence that the seizures & decrees
imposed on him from the hands of the Comédiens Français & from Mr
Prault Son may have or might


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