Trademark history

Posted by Jane on October 07, 2015 / Posted in Trade Marks
Trademark history. Is your trademark protected?

Trademark history


Lets go down the history line… where did it all start.. In treaties it is usually reported that blacksmiths who made swords in the Roman Empire are thought of as being the first users of the trademarks.  Bakers were the first ones to take advantage of a trademark in England. In 1266 parliament passed Trademark Legislation under the reign of King Henry III, which required all the bakers to use a distinctive mark for the bread they sold.


However, the first modern trademark laws emerged in the 19th century in France, being the first country in the world to introduce a comprehensive trademark system in 1857. Followed by Britain in 1862,Merchandise Marks Act. It was made a criminal offence to imitate another’s trademark with the intent to fraud or to enable another to defraud.


Britain saw a further change in 1875; The Trademarks Registration Act was passed which allowed formal registration of trademarks at the UK patent office for the first time. Registration was considered to comprise prima facie evidence of ownership of trademark and registration of marks began on 1 January 1876.


The 1875 act defined a registrable trade mark as a device, or mark, or name of an individual or firm printed in some particular and distinctive manner; or written signature of an individual or firm; or a distinctive label or ticket.


The trademark act 1938 in the United Kingdom set up its first registration system based on the “intent-to-use” principle. The Act also established an application publishing procedure and expanded the rights of the trademark holder to include the barring of trademark use even in cases where confusion remained unlikely.  The act served as a model for similar legislation elsewhere. 

The oldest registered trademark in United Kingdom was registered in 1876- The Bass Brewery’s label incorporating its triangle logo for ale was registered under the Trade mark Registration Act 1875.

 By Sanjeet Arora

Jane Coyle
This entry was posted on October 07, 2015 and is filed under Trade Marks. You can follow our blog through the RSS 2.0 feed.