Commentary on Henrician Proclamation 1538: A Proclamation Prohibiting Unlicensed Printing of Scripture (1538)

Ronan Deazley, Lionel Bently (Editor), Martin Kretschmer (Editor)

Research output: Other contribution

Abstract

Royal Proclamation prohibiting the printing and publishing of ecclesiastical and other books without prior licence, as well as the importation, sale and publication of English language texts printed on the continent. This Proclamation established the precedent for the pre-publication licensing of literary works in England.
The commentary describes the background to the Proclamation, in particular the significance of the English Reformation, and Henry VIII's increasing interest in regulating and censuring the press. The commentary suggests that while this early instance of press intervention influenced governmental attitudes to censorship throughout the next 150 years, one of the crucial differences between this and later models of ideological control was that the 1538 Proclamation sought to censure print materials in a manner that was decoupled from the economic ownership and exploitation of such works.
Original languageEnglish
TypeScholarly Commentary
Media of outputOnline
PublisherUniversity of Cambridge
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Bibliographical note

Please cite as: Deazley, R. (2008) ‘Commentary on Henrician Proclamation 1538', in Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer, www.copyrighthistory.org

Keywords

  • copyright history

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