Codice dei delitti e delle pene pel Regno d'Italia. Edizione ufficiale

Autore: REGNO D'ITALIA (1805-1814)

Tipografo: dalla Reale stamperia

Dati tipografici: Milano, 1810

8vo (218x154 mm). 176 pp. Contemporary cardboards with inked title on spine. Ownership's inscriptions “Piantanida” on the front panel and pastedown. A fine, uncut copy fully interfoliated to allow the owner to add his notes page by page alongside the text.


Original “official” edition of the Italian translation of the French Penal Code introduced by Napoleon in 1810. The Code was approved by decree no. 254 of 12 November 1810 (published in the “Bollettino delle leggi del Regno d'Italia”, Milan, Reale Stamperia, III, 23, 1003 ff.) and came into force in the Kingdom of Italy on 1 January 1811. The code is divided into four books: Delle pene in materia criminale e correzionale, e dei loro effetti; Delle persone punibili, scusabili e responsabili per crimini o per delitti; Dei crimini, delitti e delle loro pene, which comprises two parts (Dei crimini e dei delitti contro la cosa pubblica and Crimini e delitti contro i privati); and Contravvenzioni e pene di polizia.

This is an extremely authoritarian code, the result of Napoleonic absolutism, which contains very harsh penalties, including corporal ones, and an extensive use of the death penalty. However, it borrows from Enlightenment thought the principle of legal certainty, establishing a single type of penalty for each type of offence, and that of the abstract nature of the offence, which is presented as an entity of reason that is independent of the contingencies and the person of the offender.

The present copy, all interfoliated and profusely annotated by a contemporary hand, probably belonged to the jurist Luigi Piantanida (1770-?), who was a lawyer in Milan and a great supporter of Napoleon Bonaparte, to whom he dedicated his treatise Della giurisprudenza marittima-commerciale antica e moderna (Milan, 1806-1808).


S. Vinciguerra, a cura di, Codice dei delitti e delle pene pel Regno d'Italia (1811), Padua, 2002.