Zeitschrift Aufsätze

Romain Cuttat

La constitution de l’Edit de 1570 à Genève

Despite the independence gained from the Duke of Savoy, Geneva, which took on the name Republic in the first half of the XVIth century, is no less, in its new constitutional form as in the exercise of power, dependent on an oligarchic political arrangement of which the "Eidguenots" are partly the instigators. Thus, there is less of an abrupt turnaround in the genesis of the Civil and Political Edicts of 1543 than an aristocratic model. Evidence of this is the Edict of 1570, which illustrates the unstoppable and explicit dispossession of the people in legislative matters. Although originally authorized by the Franchises of Adhémar Fabri to decide the weight of taxation, in 1570 the General Council ceded the permission to the patriciate for the right to levy taxes, but such delegation is part of singular circumstances. Indeed, this concession makes sense according to the bourgeoisie and citizens only because of imperative conditions, which are essentially due to external threats and to the situation of an economically cornered Geneva. In addition to appearing politically characteristic of an oligarchic inflection, the 1570 Edict was the subject of an ambivalent reception during the constitutional crises of the first half of the XVIIIth century, under the emergence, among others, of Natural Law, which served as a real political reason both for the bourgeoisie and citizens, as well as the patriciate. If, in many respects, the 1570 Edict reveals the oligarchic conditioning characteristic of the Geneva of the Ancien Régime, the whole issue will involve measuring the exact scope of this delegation, the ultimate purpose of which lies in this synthetic question: Whom does the power belong to?


Aufsatz vom 28. Oktober 2022
© 2022 fhi
ISSN: 1860-5605
28. Oktober 2022

DOI: https://doi.org/10.26032/fhi-2022-13