Branding started in the middle ages in Sweden. (472-1492).
The word branding is an derivative of the old Scandinavian term brandr
Initially branding consisted in the practice of producers burning their mark (or brand) onto their products. In the most common cases, was to impose a fire symbol in the flesh of a cow, to indicate ownership of the same. The word “brand” is derived from the Old Norse brandr meaning “to burn.” Vikings could have expanded the term “brndr” to England, where joined the common language as “brand”
This same action was used as a punishment in the the time of Henry VIII (an act that remained on the statute book until the reign of James I). A person who was found guilty for felony or murder was marked with the letter A on his thumb.
In law, this term is used for the action of trademark. Patents and trademarks are recognized for the first time in Italy with a Venetian Statute of 1474 which was issued by the Republic of Venice. Brands in the field of mass-marketing originated in the 19th century with the advent of packaged goods. Industrialization moved the production of many household items, such as soap, from local communities to centralized factories. When shipping their items, the factories would literally brand their logo or insignia on the barrels used, extending the meaning of “brand” to that of trademark.
The oldest brands that exist today were introduced in the market in the eighteenth century and correspond to the alcoholic beverage industry. The reason is that these products were not perishable (for its alcohol content), so they needed a name / symbol for easy identification (branding) distinctive large areas and for long periods of time. Some examples of the oldest brands are “Twining 1706″, Schweppes 1798 “and Ballantine’s 1809″.
In the United States the first brand patenting was not possible until the Constitution of 1790, and in France, until the promulgation of the law of patents a year later, in 1791.
Now, according to the American Marketing Association, Brand is the “name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s product distinct from those of other sellers”, and is one of specialties of Premier Brands Inc.
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