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No code has such a dark history as Louisiana’s Black Code. The Code noir was introduced in Louisiana in 1724, based on earlier codes developed in French Caribbean colonies. The French laws about slavery gave greater rights to slaves than their British and Dutch counterparts. Slave owners were required to baptize their slaves in the Catholic faith and to give them Sundays off for worship. They were forbidden from severe mistreatment. Slaves were allowed to marry and separation of families was not permitted. However, Louisiana’s law differed from the law in the Caribbean in several negative ways. Interracial marriage was prohibited. Slaves could no longer be freed at their master’s discretion; instead, the Superior Council approval was required to grant all requests for freedom. Freedom could not be granted out of mere generosity. The Council required an extraordinary reason for freedom.
A similar article stated,
Fifteenth-century Iberian legal traditions regulated Christians’ treatment of Jews, Muslims, and other Christians, clearly delineating, for example, who was enslaveable and who was not. In contrast, the juridical status of people who did not fit these categories was more ambiguous. Legal and philosophical arguments to address this issue began to evolve during the second half of the fifteenth century, once Portuguese mariners began to return to Iberia with captives acquired in West Africa and West Central Africa. Notably, the treatment of “black Gentiles” was addressed in 1452 and 1455, when Pope Nicolas V issued a series of papal bulls that granted Portugal the right to enslave sub-Saharan Africans. Church leaders argued that slavery served as a natural deterrent and Christianizing influence to “barbarous” behavior among pagans. Using this logic, the Pope issued a mandate to the Portuguese king, Alfonso V, and instructed him:
. . . to invade, search out, capture, vanquish, and subdue all Saracens and pagans whatsoever …[and] to reduce their persons to perpetual slavery, and to apply and appropriate to himself and his successors the kingdoms, dukedoms, counties, principalities, dominions, possessions, and goods, and to convert them to his and their use and profit . . .
How does the images of Jesus created by the catholics create more set backs and rejections to the truth. The imagery of a european Jesus further insolated the idea of french and spanish dominance and falsehood.
Portugal and Spain, under the same monarch until 1640, were the pioneers of the transatlantic slave trade. Iberian ports, such as Lisbon, Seville, and Cádiz, outfitted 97 percent of European-based slave voyages up to that date, carrying nearly 500,000 African captives to destinations of toil and death in Spanish America.
In the early years, captives who had first been brought to Spain from Africa were then packed onto slave shipsin Spanish ports for transport to New World destinations. By the 1530s, however, the trade had shifted direction, as Iberian ships sailed first to the African coast for captives, then on to the Americas.
After 1545, when Spain signed Asiento agreements authorizing other nations to transport Africans to Spanish colonies, the scale and nature of transatlantic slave trading changed once again. Thereafter, the trade to Spanish colonies was opened to all comers, and Portuguese slave traders soon became a more familiar sight in African and American ports. Before 1641, 240,000 Africans were transported to the Spanish colonies in the Caribbean and in Central America, but a larger number—337,000—were deposited in Recife, Salvador da Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, and other Brazilian coastal cities. Indeed, until that time, about 75 percent of all the 834,000 Africans forced onto slave ships were transported by Portuguese traders, most of whom were based in Brazilian ports.
From the mid-seventeenth century onward, the rise of British naval and commercial power saw the emergence of an enormous British transatlantic slave trade in the North Atlantic. Between 1543 and 1810, British slave traders loaded more than 3.2 million Africans aboard ships destined largely for the Caribbean.
Though all major European maritime powers (and increasingly, North American merchants) involved themselves in slave trading, the transatlantic slave trade continued to be dominated by the Portuguese, especially after Britain and the United States passed laws in the early nineteenth century that made the trade illegal. From 1526 to 1867, the Portuguese loaded 5,783,000 Africans for Brazil, with an estimated 2,208,000 captives shipped in an illegal slave trade between 1808 and 1867.