Commentary on:
French Literary and Artistic Property Act (1793)

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Commentary on the French Literary and Artistic Property Act

Frédéric Rideau

Faculty of Law, University of Poitiers, France


Please cite as:

Rideau, F. (2010) ‘Commentary on the French Literary and Artistic Property Act (1793)', in Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer,



1. Full title

2. Abstract

3. References


1. Full title

Decree of the National Convention, of 19 July 1793, regarding the property rights of authors to writings of all kinds, of composers of music, of painters and illustrators (with the report of Lakanal)


2. Abstract

The Decree of 19-24 July 1793, probably the most famous of the French legislative sources for intellectual property, confirmed the recognition of the literary and artistic property right, secured from now on by national law. In spite of its mere 7 articles, it was to have a very exceptional longevity, framing the matter throughout 19th century. However, it was voted upon by the National Assembly without any specific debates and in any case managed to establish, for better or for worse, a precarious balance, often discussed throughout 19th century, between the interest of the individual and the interest of the public.


3. References

full commentary in preparation

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