The Public Domain Review

This is just an automatic copy of Public Domain Review blog.

Maniac Chase (1904)

Thursday 9 March 2017 at 18:04

One of the very first screen depictions of the now familiar Napoleon delusion trope — in which a mentally ill person believes themselves to be Napoleon Bonaparte.


Voltaire and the Buddha

Wednesday 8 March 2017 at 16:22

Donald S. Lopez, Jr. looks at Voltaire's early reflections on Buddhism and how, in his desire to separate the Buddha's teachings from the trappings of religion, the French Enlightenment thinker prefigured an approach now familiar in the West.


Images from Johann Zahn’s Oculus Artificialis (1685)

Tuesday 7 March 2017 at 17:42

The excellent engravings from Johann Zahn's early and comprehensive account of the function and usage of a number of optical instruments, including the camera obscura and magic lantern.


A Journey Round my Room (1794 / 1871)

Thursday 2 March 2017 at 17:02

Xavier de Maistre's delightful parody of contemporary travel-writing written while under a six-week house-arrest in Turin.


Marcus Selmer’s Photographs of 19th-Century Norwegians

Wednesday 1 March 2017 at 18:03

Stunning set of portraits of Norwegians in national folk costume taken by the Danish photographer Marcus Selmer.


The Strange Adventures of a Pebble (1921)

Tuesday 28 February 2017 at 18:44

The natural history of the world from the point of view of a personified pebble.


A Queer Taste for Macaroni

Wednesday 22 February 2017 at 13:27

With his enormous hair, painted face, and dainty attire, the so-called "macaroni" was a common sight upon the streets and ridiculing prints of 1770s London. Dominic Janes explores how with this new figure — and the scandalous sodomy trials with which the stereotype became entwined — a widespread discussion of same-sex desire first entered the public realm, long before the days of Oscar Wilde.


Yellow Journalism: The “Fake News” of the 19th Century

Tuesday 21 February 2017 at 14:04

Peddling lies in public goes back to antiquity, but it is the with the Tabloid Wars of the 19th-century when it first reached the widespread outcry and fever pitch of scandal familiar today.


A Selection from The MET’s Public Domain Collection, Now Free from All Restrictions

Thursday 16 February 2017 at 18:48

We present our highlights from the lesser known corners of The Metropolitan Museum's public domain collection, now made available free from restrictions on use.


Francesco Tamagno sings Verdi’s Otello, Death Scene (1903)

Thursday 9 February 2017 at 17:44

Two years after Verdi's death and two years before his own, the great Francesco Tamagno sings the death scene of Othello, Niun Mi Tema.