Portuguese Slave Company Statutes & Rights
Following Pombal’s success in establishing the trading monopoly known as the Companhia do Grão Pará e Maranhão in 1755, which was to have exclusive rights to the vast northern area of Brazil, the great Portuguese reformer established a similar monopoly for the southern region: the Companhia Geral de Pernambuco e Paraíba “Companhia Geral de Pernambuco e Paraíba. Instituiçaõ da Companhia Geral de Pernambuco, e Paraíba. Miguel Rodrigues.” The new company’s trade monopoly was to be supreme in the two captaincies noted in its name, with Brazil–Africa/Africa–Brazil commerce—i.e., the slave trade—being specifically included in its perquisites. This, the first edition of this publication, contains the statutes of the company in 63 numbered clauses, plus a copy of the royal decree approving them and officially establishing the company. It was to be reprinted in 1776.