history of patent law essay

5-page essay on the history of patent law

History of patent law essay

History of Patent Laws

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History of Patent Laws

             Patent laws are a grant given by the government to indivi9duilas who are inventors of their creation. The government gives them the right to put aside others from selling or using their invention.  It is, however, usually given for a short period. Patent laws are generally provided for new and machines which are useful, and, manufactured. Also, industrial processes and improvement in significant products area allowed grants by the government. Fresh foods, chemical compounds, and medical products are also given grants and also for the procedures that they subjected in their making. These are laws that are meant to safeguard the rights of inventors of products from other people using them. history of patent law essay

Ancient Innovation of Patents

             Robin Jacob, a British expert on intellectual property rights, denotes the concept of copyright to 600 BC. The patent law that was in question at this time was the awarding of patent laws for newfangled bread. It is known that as far as 500 BC, Sybaris chefs had the option to a year for a particular unique dish that they had created. The reference to Sybaris Chefs can be noted to be one of the well-known for intellectual protection of property.  Years later, a judge of the Roman Empire by the name Vitruvius tried some poets who were found guilty of taking material without the consent of the legal owner. It was after that ruling that the Romans had to debate on the various types of intellectual property and ownership though there were no laws that were created to define such issues.

             The guild system during the idle ages later become the time when protection of material and property through patent laws came to stand. At the time when the patents were not effectively used, fierce protection by the guilds began, and they resulted in protecting their craft and barred information from finding its way to the general public. 

The Venetian Act (1474)

             It is the first recognized Act that coded the system of patent laws in great Europe. Although the patent laws were already in existence, there were no standards to define the laws. The Venetian Act later came in to set the required standards. It is through this set of streamlining of patent laws that they could be categorized and defined in a manner that would have them accessed easily. (Moser, 2016), before the Act, the patent laws were only awarded on a personal basis and in which response to any person’s inquiry for the safety of their property. After the implementation of the Act, it became easy for everyone to access the rights and protect their wealth efficiently. It was, however, a requirement that the patent is new and original and with a meaningful purpose that could be used.

             The above set rules on acquiring patent laws set the standard for coming centuries, and up to date, the same criteria are used for obtaining of patent laws in the United States. After two centuries following the enactment of the patent laws in Venetian, the system spread fast across the whole of Europe. England, for instance, created their method to the fullest. Some evident letters depict that patent laws exist in Europe even before the Venetian enactment, this means that the development of the patent laws in Europe developed with much ease without the ease of the Venetian system.

British Statute of Monopolies (1624)

             James1 made a royal declaration that officially abolished the laws of Brehon. The royalty then created the Common laws of England. It was included in the monopolies statute of 1623 the restriction of powers of the Monarch in that in the event of the resignation of the Monarch; they would only allocate patent letters to creators of original innovation for a specified time.

             The parliament move was meant to bar the Monarch from providing patent letters on the grounds of standard design and properties to their favorite courtiers. The above patronage had a direct impact that saw small civil unrest in the country. The administrations of the letters were later sent to the ordinary law courts. (Durham, 2018), the monopolies statutes, however, did not end the disorder and abuse of patent laws by Monarch, but it was a representation of an essential time in the history of patent history. 

First Patent Act in the United States (1790)

            In the United States, the patent laws were mismanaged by their fellow handled by their fellow colonies. It was until the 1780s when no general rules were created that some of the member states of the country began to enact their statutes. The passing of the first United States Act was done in 1790. The enactment however only survived for three years after which the 1793 patent Act came into law. The statute saw the issuance of patent laws to any individual who had created their invention or discovered a piece of art, manufactured, and engineered, or created any machine.  history of patent law essay

              The Act took the function of an evaluation system and left from the operation of registration in England. The patent would only be allowed after approval by two of three members of the board. There has been a significant advancement in the development of patent laws since the enactment of the American Act in 1790. The standards for acquiring a patent have, however, stood the test. For one to be issued a license on their property, there has to be an application that shows that they are worthy of having patent rights to their supposed property. history of patent law essay

            As the growth for commerce and industry has continued to grow immensely over the years, there has been significant pressure for the harmonization of patent rights systems among countries in the universe. Just as history dates, it is required that every business person, and especially inventors claim their creation through the application of patent rights against misguided fellows who would want to use their products without their consent. International efforts that can be recorded of the push to have individuals around the world claim the right to their invention were seen in the International Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. The international convention for the protection of Industrial property was first taken into consideration in France in 1883 and later amended several times.

             Its implementation gave inventors who had applied for applications in a member state to benefit for the first filling since they could acquire rights in all the other member states, (Dutfield, 2017). A cooperation treaty then followed in 1970 which simplified the filling process of application for a patent for the same creation in various countries by giving a centralized procedure for filling and a standardized format for the use. Later on, A European Patent Convention was then implemented in the year 1977, which saw the creation of a European office for acquiring patent rights. The European Convention required the status of a global patent by every member nation that was designated by every applicant.

             International harmonization of patent rights saw the creation of TRIPS (Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) which was meant to negotiate part of the Uruguay Round between 1986-1994 of GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade).  TRIPS creation required that all members of the World Trade Organization expand their patent protection to every product, be it a product or industrial process. Some of the countries might, however, not grant a patent for surgical procedures. Such international copyright was required to protect the owners of the creations from the violation. It is therefore through such an avenue that the above conventions came to place as enactment in the patent protection.


             Patent laws are enactments that date back in history because of the increased need for the protection of inventions. The Vatican Act traces the earliest form of patent laws that were put across because of the need for protection of people of would use the creation of others without their consent. Therefore the patent laws have grown significantly around the world from great England to America. It is through the patent right that the various international communities such as World Trade Organization resulted in giving patents to their member states. There has been a significant development in the patent right where some countries have extended the laws to protect the industrial process and other technological innovations in the universe. Patent rights have been revolutionary in the world of trade and business because now business people can operate freely and without fear of having to lose their inventions. history of patent law essay


Durham, A. L. (2018). Patent law essentials: A concise guide. ABC-CLIO.

Dutfield, G. (2017). Intellectual property rights and the life science industries: a twentieth-century history. Routledge.

Moser, P. (2016). Patents and innovation in economic history. Annual Review of Economics8, 241-258.

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