Livingston's Influential Penal Code Livingston, Edward [1764-1836]. A System of Penal Law, For the State of Louisiana: Consisting of A Code of Crimes and Punishments, A Code of Procedure, A Code of Evidence, A Code of Reform and Prison Discipline, A Book of Definitions. Prepared Under the Authority of a Law of the Said State. To Which are Prefixed a Preliminary Report on the Plan of a Penal Code, and Introductory Reports to the Several Codes Embraced in the System of Penal Law. Philadelphia: James Kay, Jun. & Brother, . v, 745 pp. Octavo (9" x 5-3/4"). Recent period-style quarter calf over cloth, blind fillets and lettering piece to spine, endpapers renewed. Small chips to margins of two leaves with no loss to text. Negligible light foxing in places, interior otherwise clean. A handsome copy. $950. * First edition of the complete code, one of two printings issued in 1833. (The other has the date on the title page.) A comprehensive system of criminal law which, while not adopted in the United States, is still influential today because it is the first complete penal code built on Jeremy Bentham's principles of codification. The first part, Code of Offenses and Punishments, was published in 1824 with the misleading title: A System of Penal Law, For the State of Louisiana. The other four sections, containing the Codes of Procedure, Evidence, Reform and Prison Discipline and Book of Definitions were published separately in 1825 and 1826. All five parts appeared together for the first time in the 1833 edition. Hicks marvels at the scope and clear organization of this code and notes that Bentham, Hugo, Lafayette, Story, Marshall, Madison, Kent and Jefferson considered it "the most comprehensive and enlightened system of criminal law that has ever been presented to the world." A notably humane code, it is important for its advocacy of prevention rather than punishment. Livingston was a senator from Louisiana and later a member of Andrew Jackson's cabinet. Hicks, Men and Books Famous in the Law 180. Cohen, Bibliography of Early American Law 10348.
Book number 44226