The First French Edition of the Acts Passed by the First Session of the First Congress of the United States, Including the First French Publication of the Bill of Rights, the First to Appear Outside of the United States

    [Bill of Rights]. Actes Passes a un Congrès des États-Unis de l'Amérique, Commencé & Tenu Dans La Ville De New-Yorck...En L'année 1789. Paris: Hotel de Thou, 1790. First French edition. Approximately 7.5 x 4.75 inches. Small octavo. xi, [1], 280 pages. Modern three-quarter morocco and marbled boards, spine gilt. Slight marginal soiling on title page, else internally very clean. Overall, very good.

    The appearance of this document of essential liberties at a crucial point in the evolution of the French Revolution is of the greatest importance. The first public appearance of the Bill of Rights in the United States was in the Journal of The Senate for the first session of Congress, followed closely by its appearance in the Acts Passed at a Congress of the United States. The latter document is herein reprinted in full, including the Constitution and the numerous seminal acts which were passed at the first session of the first Congress, such as the establishment of courts, basic commercial laws, executive departments, and basic government services. Most important, however, is the Bill of Rights, which appears here in its original twelve-amendment form (the first two were eliminated before adoption, so that the present first amendment is the third listed here, and so forth). This appearance of the Bill of Rights, evidently the first outside the United States, is rare, with the NUC locating only six copies.

    Sabin 15495.

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    Auction Dates
    April, 2012
    11th-12th Wednesday-Thursday
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