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Title: Forgery  
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Forgery is the process of making, adapting, or imitating objects, statistics, or document it is often called a false document.

This usage of "forgery" does not derive from

A forgery is essentially concerned with a produced or altered object. Where the prime concern of a forgery is less focused on the object itself – what it is worth or what it "proves" – than on a tacit statement of criticism that is revealed by the reactions the object provokes in others, then the larger process is a hoax. In a hoax, a rumor or a genuine object planted in a concocted situation, may substitute for a forged physical object.

The similar crime of security engineering.

In the 16th century, imitators of Pablo Picasso, Paul Klee, and Henri Matisse.

A special case of double forgery is the forging of Jacques van Meegeren.


  • Criminal law 1
    • England and Wales and Northern Ireland 1.1
    • Scotland 1.2
    • Republic of Ireland 1.3
    • Canada 1.4
  • Civil law 2
  • Documentary art 3
  • In popular culture 4
  • See also 5
  • References and sources 6
  • External links 7

Criminal law

England and Wales and Northern Ireland

In Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981, which provides:

A person is guilty of forgery if he makes a false instrument, with the intention that he or another shall use it to induce somebody to accept it as genuine, and by reason of so accepting it to do or not to do some act to his own or any other person’s prejudice.[1]

"Instrument" is defined by section 8, "makes" and "false" by section 9, and "induce" and "prejudice" by section 10.

Forgery is indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years, or, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or to both.[2]

For offences akin to forgery, see English criminal law#Forgery, personation and cheating.


  • Bibliographies of archaeological forgeries, art forgeries etc
  • Museum security mnetwork: sources of information on art forgery; with encyclopedic links
  • Fakes and Forgeries on the Trafficking Culture website, University of Glasgow

External links

  • Cohon, Robert. Discovery & Deceit: archaeology & the forger's craft Kansas: Nelson-Atkins Museum, 1996
  • Muscarella, Oscar. The Lie Became Great: the forgery of Ancient Near Eastern cultures, 2000
  • Detecting the Truth: Fakes, Forgeries and Trickery"Imaginary Images" in at Library and Archives Canada
  1. ^ Digitised copy of section 1.
  2. ^ The Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981, sections 6(1) to (3)(a)
  3. ^ The Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981, section 13
  4. ^ W J Stewart and Robert Burgess. Collins Dictionary of Law. HarperCollins Publishers. 1996. ISBN 0 00 470009 0. Pages 176 and 398.
  5. ^ Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia
  6. ^ Irish Statute Book. Digitised copy of section 25.
  7. ^ The Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001, section 25(2)
  8. ^ The Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001, sections 3(2) and (3)
  9. ^ The Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001, section 65(4)(b)
  10. ^ Yeazell, Ruth Bernard (2008). Art of the Everyday: Dutch Painting and the Realist Novel. Princeton University Press. p. 88.  
  11. ^ McBride, Joseph (2006). What Ever Happened to Orson Welles?: A Portrait of an Independent Career. University Press of Kentucky. pp. 245–250.  
  12. ^ Casper, Drew (2011). Hollywood Film 1963-1976: Years of Revolution and Reaction. John Wiley & Sons. p. 1972.  
  13. ^ Cawelti, John G. (1977). Adventure, Mystery, and Romance: Formula Stories as Art and Popular Culture. University of Chicago Press. p. 281.  
  14. ^ Wight, Douglas (2012). "Owning December". Leonardo DiCaprio: The Biography. John Blake Publishing Ltd.  
  15. ^ "Telling the Coiners' story". BBC North Yorkshire. 3 June 2008. 

References and sources

See also

  • The 1839 novel by [10]
  • The [11]
  • The 1966 heist comedy film How to Steal a Million centers around Nicole Bonnet (Audrey Hepburn) attempting to steal a fake Cellini made by her grandfather.[12]
  • The 1972 novel by [13]
  • The 2002 film [14]
  • The graphic art novel The Last Coiner, authored by Peter M. Kershaw, is based on the exploits of the 18th century counterfeiters, the Cragg Vale Coiners, who were sentenced to execution by hanging at Tyburn.[15]

In popular culture

Before the invention of photography, people commonly hired painters and engravers to "re-create" an event or a scene. Artists had to imagine what to illustrate based on the information available to them about the subject. Some artists added elements to make the scene more exotic, while others removed elements out of modesty. In the 18th century, for example, Europeans were curious about what North America looked like and were ready to pay to see illustrations depicting this faraway place. Some of these artists produced prints depicting North America, despite many having never left Europe.

Documentary art

As to the effect, in the United Kingdom, of a forged signature on a bill of exchange, see section 24 of the Bills of Exchange Act 1882.

Civil law

  • if tried summarily: 6 months
  • if tried on indictment: 10 years

Forgery is an offence under sections 366, 367 and 368 of the country's Criminal Code. The offence is a hybrid offence, subject to a maximum prison sentence of:


Except as regards offences committed before the commencement of the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001 and except where the context otherwise requires, without prejudice to section 65(4)(a) of that Act, references to forgery must be construed in accordance with the provisions of that Act.[9]

Any offence at common law of forgery is abolished. The abolition of a common law offence of forgery does not affect proceedings for any such offence committed before its abolition.[8]

A person guilty of forgery is liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years, or to a fine, or to both.[7]

A person is guilty of forgery if he or she makes a false instrument with the intention that it shall be used to induce another person to accept it as genuine and, by reason of so accepting it, to do some act, or to make some omission, to the prejudice of that person or any other person.[6]

In the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act, 2001 which provides:

Republic of Ireland

The Forgery of Foreign Bills Act 1803 was repealed in 2013.

Forgery is not an offence under the law of Scotland, except in cases where statute provides otherwise.[4][5]



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