The Code Napoleon, an entire set of civil and criminal laws, was enacted in 1804 in France. A synthesis of Germanic and Roman law, it is considered to be the first unified code of legislation which guaranteed a humanist assortment of personal rights, legal protections of the individual, and so on. It was so named for the French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.

Known in America, if at all, as the Napoleonic Code, it still constitutes the core of the State of Louisiana’s civil statutes, which is a further indication of the rate of progress in that fine state (it should be noted that the Code has aged very well, evolving with history, and that there’s no reason to replace it at all).

Incidentally, Napoleon made plans before his death to relocate to New Orleans, LA, and the building constructed to be his new home is still in the French Quarter, and now houses an excellent bar and restaurant called “The Napoleon House.”

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