The ASV Bible is viewed to be a Public Domain work in America (as is the KJV), but is the ASV also considered a public domain bible in England?

I ask this question because the internet indicates that there were certain licensing provisions made with the Crown in the original production of ASV. So would I or anyone have any problems or issues with UK copyright or Crown issues in the UK by repeatedly quoting the ASV? Oxford and Cambridge apparently don't allow the KJV to be quoted for commercial usage, and other types of usage has limitations. Is that true for the ASV bible also?

  • Since this is a legal question of copyright, anyone giving advice will also become subject to any legal proceedings in the future. So, from me, no comment :)
    – Nigel J
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


Even though KJV is still under UK copyright until 2039, ASV is not.

KJV copyright status according to wikipedia:

Public domain in most of the world. Crown copyright in the United Kingdom due to crown letters patent until 2039, and all countries which have international mutual copyright recognition agreements.

ASV copyright status according to wikipedia (emphasis mine):

Copyright: Copyright expired


In 1901, after the 15-year deferral agreement between the American and British Revisers expired, and the Revised Version, Standard American Edition, as the ASV Bible was officially called at the time, was published by Thomas Nelson & Sons. It was copyrighted in North America to ensure the purity of the ASV text. In 1928, the International Council of Religious Education (the body that later merged with the Federal Council of Churches to form the National Council of Churches) acquired the copyright from Nelson and renewed it the following year. The copyright was a reaction to tampering with the text of the Revised Version by some U.S. publishers, as noted above. By the time the ASV's copyright expired for the final time in 1957,5 interest in this translation had largely waned in the light of newer and more recent ones, and textual corruption hence never became the issue with the ASV that it had with the RV.

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