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Re: Crown copyright and bible-kjv

Thomas Thurman <thomas@thurman.org.uk> wrote:
> A question I'm curious about:
> /usr/doc/bible-kjv/copyright and /usr/doc/bible-kjv-text/copyright say:
> : The copyright for the King James Version text of the Bible is expired
> : since the translation was done in 1611 under King James the first of
> : Great Britain.
> Do we have anyone who can confirm that this is correct within the UK and
> generally within the Commonwealth? I've seen it claimed that the Crown
> Copyright on the text is perpetual (e.g. at [1], and at least one
> publisher of Bible software claims that they needed a licence to do
> so: [2]).
> And if this is incorrect, do we just go and ask the Crown Patentees for a
> licence to distribute, or move the package into another area, or what?

Reading some stuff on Eldred v. Reno, I cam across the following snippet

  Until the Statute of Anne (1710), copyright in England had been
  perpetual.  Historians' Br.  at 5-6.  After the Statute of Anne
  limited the copyright term, publishers continued to insist that
  their common law copyright remained perpetual, the Statute of Anne
  notwithstanding.  Not until 1774 was this question finally resolved
  against the publishers. Donaldson v. Beckett, 4 Burr. 2408, 98
  Eng. Rep. 257 (H.L. 1774).

at http://eon.law.harvard.edu/openlaw/eldredvashcroft/, p. 26 of the
opening brief.  So I don't think that we have to worry about Crown

Walter Landry

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