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Old 10-11-2017, 06:36 AM   #1
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Copyright question: Shelley's Esdaile manuscript

I can't recall the term after which posthumously published work by a long-dead author enters the public domain.

Specifically: The poems from Percy Bysshe Shelley's "Esdaile notebook" were first published in 1964. Are they in the public domain now?
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Old 10-11-2017, 06:37 AM   #2
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And could a moderator please be so kind and supply the missing "l" in Shelley's name in the thread title?
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Old 10-11-2017, 09:25 AM   #3
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I can't recall the term after which posthumously published work by a long-dead author enters the public domain.

Specifically: The poems from Percy Bysshe Shelley's "Esdaile notebook" were first published in 1964. Are they in the public domain now?
Others here know more about copyright than I do, but my reading says that in Germany, posthumous works by authors dead more than 70 years enter the public domain 25 years after publication. So, yes, for MR purposes (I'm open to correction).
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Old 10-11-2017, 09:38 AM   #4
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Thanks. I think I also recall reading about those 25 years.

(And thanks for fixing the thread title. So embarrassing...)
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Old 10-11-2017, 10:14 AM   #5
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Yes, if the work would otherwise be in the public domain, the initial publisher gets a one-time 25-year copyright term from the date of first publication.
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:19 AM   #6
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Thanks. So I can prepare the poems for upload.
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:34 AM   #7
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Thanks. So I can prepare the poems for upload.
Provided that there's no editorial stuff, such as footnotes, that's been added, yes.
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:46 AM   #8
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Provided that there's no editorial stuff, such as footnotes, that's been added, yes.
There's a long introduction, but I never intended to upload that.

A more interesting problem is the question of textual emendations. The editor has listed all the changes he applied to Shelley's manuscript; most of them are corrections of spelling errors - can I stick with the editor's corrections, or will I have to restore Shelley's errors?
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:49 AM   #9
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A more interesting problem is the question of textual emendations. The editor has listed all the changes he applied to Shelley's manuscript; most of them are corrections of spelling errors - can I stick with the editor's corrections, or will I have to restore Shelley's errors?
You should be OK with them. Such things as correcting spelling is generally not regarded as a "creative" process, and is therefore not protected by copyright.
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Old 10-11-2017, 11:54 AM   #10
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Yes, I see. I always forget about that creativity aspect. Thanks.
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