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J. Patrick McGahern Books

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Constitutions des Treize Etats-Unis de l’Amerique. Nouvelle Edition

[American Revolution] 8vo., in 8's., 19.5cm, First Edition in French, first issue. 324 & 317pp., 2 parts in One volumes, in contemporary quarter speckled quarter calf, gilt decorated borders, corner devices, and centre penal urn decorations in the panels, crushed crimson morocco label, matched marbled boards, there is a slighting in the top front corner of the final text leaves, not obtrusive otherwise fine copy. ~ Howes C-716. Sabin 16120. Barbier 1-735. The original French edition of the constitutions was published through the efforts of Benjamin Franklin in 1783. It was translated by the Duc de la Rochefoucauld, and annotated by him, and included the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the treaties made between the United States and the countries of France, Sweden and the Netherlands. These are in here as well, but the significance of this edition lies in the fact that the text of the Federal Constitution and that of the Bill of Rights appear for the first time. This is not surprising; the work was very possibly employed as a piece of propaganda during this critical year of the French Revolution, when the T uileries was invaded, the revolutionary Commune established, the royal family imprisoned, the Republic proclaimed in September, and power seized by the Jacobins, who began to draft their own constitution.~ Franklin's grand gesture in publishing and distributing these constitutions, aboutwhich there was an intense interest and couriosity among statesmen, was one of his chief achievements as propagandist for the new American republic". Streeter V2-1035.
  • $2,666
  • $2,666