Bernardo Giunti's privilege for Machiavelli's works, Vatican (1531)

Source: scanned from the manuscript held in the Vatican Secret Archives: ASVat, Armadio 40; tomo 37, c. 297r-v, doc. nr 573.

Bernardo Giunti's privilege for Machiavelli's works, Vatican (1531), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer,

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Pope Clement VII's privilege to Bernardo Giunti for printing Niccolo Machiavelli's works, 20 December 1531

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An indult issued by Pope Clement VII on 20 December 1531, conceding to the Florentine printer Antonio Giunti a ten-year copyright for the publication of three works by Niccolò Machiavelli in derogation of the earlier exclusive right to print Machiavelli's works granted to the Roman printer Antonio Blado (23 August 1531). Both privileges claim to offer 'universal' protection, covering all of Christendom. Giunti's privilege mentions two mitigating circumstances: that Blado had already sold out a major part of his output and so Giunti's edition would not jeopardise his investments; and that Giunti had obtained the concession from Machiavelli's heirs, whereas Blado had not. The enactment of these two privileges constitutes an important episode in the history of 'universal' privileges granted on papal authority and their increasingly controversial nature which pitted the spiritual 'universal' power of the Church against local temporal jurisdictions. The commentary describes the background of these two privileges, in particular the politics of papal privileges, their validity and efficiency throughout various jurisdictions in Italy and beyond. The commentary suggests that privileges given on papal spiritual authority were often considered to be of questionable validity by the temporal powers, particularly Venice which was the first state to ignore the privileges granted to Blado and Giunti and grant its own privileges for Machiavelli's works.

Commentary: No commentaries for this record.

  • Stella, Aldo, 'Chiesa e stato nelle relazioni dei nunzi pontifici a Venezia: Ricerche sul giurisdizionalismo veneziano dal XVI al XVIII secolo', 'Studi e testi', 239 (Città del Vaticano: Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, 1964)

  • _____., 'Studi sulla fortuna del Machiavelli' (Rome: Istituto storico italiano per l'età moderna e contemporanea, 1965)

  • Procacci, Giuliano, 'Machiavelli nella cultura europea' (Rome: Laterza, 1995)

  • Pincin, Carlo, 'Sul testo del Machiavelli: I Discorsi sopra la prima Deca di Tito Livio', 'Atti della Accademia delle scienze di Torino' 96, nr 2 (1961-1962): 71-178

  • _____., 'Regolamentazione e controllo delle pubblicazioni negli antichi Stati italiani', in 'Produzione e commercio della carta e del libro (Florence, 1992), 692-700

  • Frajese, Vittorio, 'Note su Machiavelli', 'Studi Storici: Rivista Trimestrale dell'Istituto Gramsci' 38 (1997): 135-155

  • Fontana, Pierina, 'Inizi della proprietà letteraria nello stato pontificio', 'Accademie e Bibliotece d'Italia' 3 (1929-1930): 204-221

Related documents in this database:
1531: Antonio Blado's privilege for Machiavelli's works
1532: Antonio Blado's edition of Machiavelli's 'History of Florence'
1534: Melchiore Sessa's privilege for Machiavelli's works

Author: N/A

Publisher: N/A

Year: 1531

Location: Vatican

Language: Latin

Source: scanned from the manuscript held in the Vatican Secret Archives: ASVat, Armadio 40; tomo 37, c. 297r-v, doc. nr 573.

Persons referred to:
Blado, Antonio
Blosio Palladio
Clement VII
Giunti, Bernardo
Giunti, Filippo
Machiavelli, Niccolo

Places referred to:

Cases referred to:

Institutions referred to:

Papal printing privilege for Antonio Blado (1531)
Papal printing privilege for Filippo Giunti's heirs (1531)

author/publisher relations
privileges, Papal

Responsible editor: N/A

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