The Public Domain Review

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Ambassadors, milkmaids, and hot air balloons

Tuesday 4 February 2014 at 17:15

ZENTRALBIBLIOTHEK SOLOTHURN - Patrick Borer picks out some highlights from their collection of 18th-century prints and looks at what they tell us about life in a Swiss city state.


The Flying Lighthouse of Barfleur

Sunday 2 February 2014 at 18:47

Animated GIF created by Alex Pickup from a photograph of the Barfleur Lighthouse in…


Cartoon Map of Europe in 1914

Wednesday 29 January 2014 at 17:51

A German cartoon from 1914 showing the lay of the political land as seen from the Germ…


The Funny Alphabet (ca.1850)

Thursday 23 January 2014 at 15:26

A delightful little alphabet book in which the letters are made up from acrobatically contorted bodies, and the accompanying text from often as equally contorted rhymes.


Writing his Life through the Other: The Anthropology of Malinowski

Wednesday 22 January 2014 at 17:03

Last year saw the works of Bronislaw Malinowski – father of modern anthropology – enter the public domain in many countries around the world. Michael W. Young explores the personal crisis plaguing the Polish-born anthropologist at the end of his first major stint of ethnographic immersion in the Trobriand Islands, a period of self-doubt glimpsed through entries in his diary – the most infamous, most nakedly honest document in the annals of social anthropology.


Selection from Wellcome Library’s release of 100k openly licensed images

Monday 20 January 2014 at 17:24

This morning the Wellcome Library announced its release of 100,000 of its historical images under an open license (CC-BY – meaning they are free for any re-use provided that the Wellcome Library is credited). The range and quality of the images released is phenomenal. The collection covers more than a thousand years of imagery relating to the history of medicine, including manuscripts, paintings, etchings, early photography and advertisements – from medieval Persian anatomy to the satirical prints of Rowlandson and Gillray. This move by the Wellcome is yet another recent example of a hugely respected institution releasing digitisations of its public domain content under an open license – with the last 6 months seeing The Getty and The British Library making similar moves. It’s a really promising sign of a more general shift toward opening up public domain content that we’ve seen taking place in the cultural sector over the last couple of years. Wonderful stuff! This selection from Wellcome’s release that we’ve chosen below is from just the first 1% of the 100,000 images made available. Remember, all are published under an CC-BY license so, if re-using, you must credit the “Wellcome Library, London”. Just click on the images […]


The Monster (1903)

Thursday 16 January 2014 at 17:36

A 1903 film directed by French filmmaker Georges Méliès and, as is common with his films, starring the man himself. The story centres on the chaotic, and ultimately futile, attempt to bring a dead Egyptian Princess back to life.


Scenes relating to the life of Charles IV, King of Spain (1788)

Wednesday 15 January 2014 at 15:21

Woodcut print showing forty-eight numbered scenes relating to the life of Charles IV, King of Spain.


Twelve Years a Slave (1859)

Tuesday 14 January 2014 at 16:27

The memoir by Solomon Northup upon which the recent much acclaimed feature film, Twelve Years a Slave directed by Steve McQueen, was based. The narrative tells the harrowing true story of Northup, who was born free in New York state but kidnapped in Washington, D.C., sold into slavery and kept in bondage for 12 years in Louisiana.


Rainbow coloured beasts from 15th century Book of Hours

Thursday 9 January 2014 at 17:31

A selection of wonderful little illustrations found in a Book of Hours attributed to an artist of the Ghent-Bruges school and dating from the late 15th century. In the pages without full borders the margins have been decorated with an array of different images depicting flowers, birds, jewellery, animals, household utensils and these superb rainbow-coloured ‘grotesques’. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Found via: Demonagerie Underlying Work: PD Worldwide | Digital Copy: No Additional Rights Download: Right click on image or see source for higher res versions HELP TO KEEP US AFLOAT The Public Domain Review is a not-for-profit project and we rely on support from our readers to stay afloat. If you like what we do then please do consider making a donation. We welcome all contributions, big or small - everything helps! Become a Patron Small angel : £3.00 GBP - monthly Medium sized hero : £5.00 GBP - monthly Large emperor : £10.00 GBP - monthly Vast deity : £20.00 GBP - monthly Make a one off Donation SIGN UP TO THE NEWSLETTER Sign up to get our free fortnightly newsletter which shall deliver direct to your inbox the latest brand new article and a digest of […]