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Code Noir, 1765.

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€8.900,00 EUR
Regular price
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€8.900,00 EUR


Rare Code Noir edition: a vast codex of Black American legislature

France: Louis XV (1715-1774 ).

Recueils de réglemens, […] & la police des colonies françaises de l'Amerique, & les engagés. Avec le Code Noir, et l'addition audit Code. Nouvelle Édition.

Paris, Les Libraires associés, 1765.

2 parts in 1 volume. 12°. 30, [1 blank], 1-186, 23-24, 187-193, [1 blank] pp. With woodcut printer's ornaments on title pages; head and tail pieces.

Contemporary marbled calf, gold-tooled spine with title shield, marbled stiff endpapers, speckled sides.

Very rare edition of the infamous Code Noir, here incorporated in a collection of legal texts relating to the French American colonies and slavery, including Canada, Louisiana, Illinois and the Caribbean. This edition is not recorded in the French Collective Catalogue (CCFR).
It includes in the first part the ordinances taken from 1664 to 1744 concerning trade with America, and in a second part the texts on the administration of justice and the police of the colonies, followed by the Code Noir and the Addition to the Code Noir relating to the slave trade in Guinea and America. The Code Noir here includes the edicts and other acts promulgated from 1685 to 1738 and those taken from 1716 to 1742.
The Code Noir, translated as the Black Code, was a decree issued by the French King Louis XIV in 1685. It regulated the institution of slavery and the treatment of enslaved people in the French colonial empire, particularly in the Caribbean colonies such as Saint-Domingue (present-day Haiti) and Martinique. The Code Noir outlined various aspects of slave ownership, including rules regarding slave status, punishment, and religious practices. It aimed to maintain control over the enslaved population and ensure the stability of the colonial economy.
Over time, as circumstances changed and new laws were enacted, revisions and additions were made to the Code Noir. These later editions often reflected shifts in colonial policies, changes in the legal status of enslaved individuals, and adjustments to accommodate evolving social and economic conditions in the French colonies. However, the fundamental principles of the Code Noir, pertaining to the regulation and control of slavery, remained largely consistent throughout its existence.

Condition: spine and corners restored. Slight worming in the top of the pages throughout, mostly in the margins though sometimes affecting text, partially restored. Otherwise in very good condition.


Sabin 68420 & 68439: “The “Code Noir,” etc., mentioned in the above title, form a part of the “Recueil d’Édits, Declarations et Arrêts” of the same date (No. 68420, supra), which should always accompany this volume.

Not in Hogg, The African Slave Trade(!).

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