Corsican Constitution

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The first Corsican Constitution was drawn up in 1755 for the short-lived Corsican Republic independent from Genoa beginning in 1755 and remained in force until the annexation of Corsica by France in 1769. It was written in Italian, the language of culture and people in Corsica until the end of the nineteenth century and over.

Drafted by Pasquale Paoli and others and inspired by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the Corsican Constitution was one of the first codified national constitutions of an independent republic in the modern age.[1] It was known to some of the founding fathers of the USA that could read Italian. Though relatively unknown compared to the United States Constitution that went into effect in 1789 and the Polish Constitution of 3 May 1791, it preceded them and was a forerunner of modern democracy founded on Enlightenment principles, along with the 1720 documents of Sweden's Age of Liberty (the Swedish 18th-century parliamentary era).[citation needed]

The second Corsican Constitution was drawn up in 1794 for the short-lived (1794–96) Anglo-Corsican Kingdom and introduced universal suffrage for property owners. It was also considered a highly democratic constitution for its time.


  1. ^ Dorothy Carrington (1973), "The Corsican Constitution of Pasquale Paoli (1755–1769)", The English Historical Review, 88:348 (July), p. 482.

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