Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.

Trade Marks

Trade Marks. As early as the reign of Queen Elizabeth we have evidence of the existence of trade marks, and in 1783 Lord Mansfield decided a case concerning them. In 1875 an Act laid down a regulation as to what constitutes a trade-mark, and provided for their registration, an Act of 1862 having already made it a misdemeanour to counterfeit or forge a trade-mark. The Patents Act of 1883 now regulates the law of such marks, and under this Act registration gives exclusive right to the use of the mark after the lapse of five years, and this registration protects such use for fourteen years. Should the Comptroller of Patents refuse to register, there is an appeal to the Board of Trade, and so on to the House of Lords. An international convention of 1883 was held upon the subject. An Act of 1887 consolidates the regulations and defines offences. There are five provisions as to what constitutes a trade-mark; it may be (1) the name of a person or firm printed, impressed, or woven in a particular manner; (2) a written signature or copy thereof; (3) a brand, device, heading, label, mark, or ticket; (4) an invented word or words; (5) any word or words not bearing any geographical import. The latest important enactment on this question is that which enforces the marking of the country of origin upon all foreign manufactured goods imported into the United Kingdom.