Research Subjects: Government & Politics

Law for Re-establishing Slavery in the French Colonies

May 20, 1802 (30 F1oréa1, Year X).

Duvergier, Lois, XIII, 208.

During the interval between the peace of Amiens and the renewal of the war with England, Napoleon was engaged upon a vast design for the restoration of the once extensive colonial empire of France. His plan included the establishment of French colonies in America, India and Australia. This law was intended to promote the first step towards the realization of the American branch of the scheme, the re-establishment of French authority in San Domingo. It had precisely the opposite effect.

Title I. Creation and Organization of the Legion of Honor.

  1. In the colonies restored to France in fulfillment of the treaty of Amiens of 6 Germinal, Year X, slavery shall be maintained in conformity with the laws and regulations in force prior to 1789.
  2. The same shall be done in the other French colonies beyond the Cape of Good Hope.
  3. The trade in the blacks and their importation into the said colonies shall take place in conformity with the laws and regulations existing prior to the said date of 1789.
  4. Notwithstanding all previous laws, the government of the colonies is subject for ten years to the regulations which shall be made by the Government.


Rose, Napoleon, I, Ch. XV; Henry Adams, History of the United States, I, Chs. XIII-XVI, passim, for Napoleon's colonial plans.



Placed on the Napoleon Series 7/00


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