Early American Edition of "One of the Most Influential Books in the Whole History of Criminology," PMM 209 Beccaria, [Cesare Bonesana, Marchese de] [1738-1794]. Voltaire (Arouet, Francois-Marie) [1694-1778]. An Essay on Crimes and Punishments: By the Marquis Beccaria, Of Milan. With a Commentary by M. De Voltaire. A New Edition Corrected. Philadelphia: Printed by William Young, 1793. x, -230 pp. 12mo. (6" x 3-1/2"). Contemporary sheep, lettering piece and gilt fillets to spine. Light rubbing and some minor nicks to boards, a few creases to spine, joints starting at head, moderate rubbing to spine ends and corners, which are lightly bumped, front free endpaper lacking. Light toning to text, light foxing and negligible faint stains to a few leaves, early repair to Leaf D6 (pp. 43-44) with no loss to text. An attractive copy. $750. * Third American edition. First published in Livorno in 1764 as Dei Delitti e Delle Pene, this landmark work is, to quote Printing and the Mind of Man, "one of the most influential books in the whole history of criminology. It is significant because it was the first systematic study of the subject. Infused with the spirit of the Enlightenment, its advocacy of crime prevention and the abolition of torture and capital punishment marked a significant advance in criminological thought, which had changed little since the Middle Ages. It had a profound influence on the development of criminal law. It was especially influential among American thinkers, such as Thomas Jefferson, who wished to use Beccaria to reform the system of criminal law Americans inherited from England. The first two American editions were issued Charleston in 1777 and Philadelphia in 1778. Printing and the Mind of Man 209. Sowerby, Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson 2349. Cohen, Bibliography of Early American Law 4234.
Book number 71615