Item #5790 Por la Gran Compaña destinada para la carga, y descarga de todos los generos, y mercaderias que entran, y salen por el Rio, y Muelle de la ciudad de Sevilla, compuesta de catorce hombres, en el pleyto con el promotor fiscal: sobre el uso de la carga y descarga. Pretende se revoque en todo, y por todo la sentencia…. Jose Manuel DOMINGUEZ VICENTE.
Por la Gran Compaña destinada para la carga, y descarga de todos los generos, y mercaderias que entran, y salen por el Rio, y Muelle de la ciudad de Sevilla, compuesta de catorce hombres, en el pleyto con el promotor fiscal: sobre el uso de la carga y descarga. Pretende se revoque en todo, y por todo la sentencia…
Por la Gran Compaña destinada para la carga, y descarga de todos los generos, y mercaderias que entran, y salen por el Rio, y Muelle de la ciudad de Sevilla, compuesta de catorce hombres, en el pleyto con el promotor fiscal: sobre el uso de la carga y descarga. Pretende se revoque en todo, y por todo la sentencia…
The Great Company of the River and Dock of Seville
Fights to Reinstate its Loading and Unloading Privileges:
A Curious Legal Apology
Madrid, 1740.

Por la Gran Compaña destinada para la carga, y descarga de todos los generos, y mercaderias que entran, y salen por el Rio, y Muelle de la ciudad de Sevilla, compuesta de catorce hombres, en el pleyto con el promotor fiscal: sobre el uso de la carga y descarga. Pretende se revoque en todo, y por todo la sentencia….

Folio (27 x 19 cm), ff. (1), 1-19. With a woodcut vignette on the title page, depicting Saint Anthony of Padua, holding a lily and the Christ Child. In modern marbled boards, edges stained red. With a manicule. A clean, fresh copy.

The only known copy in the world of a legal apology urging to void the ruling of the minister of the Royal Court Juan Curiel (1690-1775) and reinstate the right of the Gran Compañia del Rio y Muelle de Sevilla [the Great Company of the River and Dock of Seville] to load and unload merchant cargo in the port of Seville. Tracing the history of the privilege back to John II of Castile (1405-1454) and describing the various ways in which it had been applied up until the ruling, this booklet provides interesting details on the history of the center of Spain's activities in the Indies throughout most of the early modern period.

In 1503, Seville became the home of the first Spanish institution for the administration of America-- the Casa de Contratación or the House of Trade. The Casa played a major role in Spanish trade with the Indies. All Spanish ships, returning from overseas, had to dock in Seville to pass an inspection, unload their cargoes, and deliver gold and silver. In 1717, the Casa was transferred to Cadiz.

The text mentions the types of goods that passed through Seville at the time, including artillery, mortar, guns, pewter (f. 9 v), as well as mercury, wood, and iron (f. 15 v). Given the weakening of Spanish rule over its overseas colonies and Spain's involvement in several wars in the first half of the eighteenth century, the focus on war-related goods and materials is not surprising. The booklet also mentions the inter-island ship "Naos" that docked in Seville in 1621, loaded with silver, which caused a public unrest, since so many people wanted to participate in its unloading (ff. 14 v-15 r).

The Gran Compañia del Rio y Muelle de Sevilla, founded in 1410, consisted of fourteen men, paid by the city. The Company's privileges were reinstated in 1456 and again in 1480. It was responsible for loading and unloading all the goods in Seville that were transported by river. In 1719, the minister of the Royal Court Juan Curiel made the Royal Treasury responsible for operating the carts and palanquins, with which the Company had previously transported the cargo, thus ending the Company's privilege.

 

The apology was written by a Madrid-based attorney, Jose Manuel Domingo Vicente. Not much is known about him except that he wrote two major legal works: Discursos jurídicos, sobre las aceptaciones, pagas, interesses, y demás requisitos, y qualidades de las letras de cambio (1732) and the three-volume Ilustracion, y continuacion a la Curia Philipica (1736-1739).

Juan Curiel (1690-1775) was a prominent Spanish politician and intellectual. Born in Seville, he held various offices throughout his life, including of the prosecutor of the Justice Chamber of the Council of Finance, a member of the Council of Castile, and "the Printing Judge," responsible for censoring all the printed materials in Spain. Curiel was also a founding member of the Royal Spanish Academy, where he held the R seat from 1714 to 1775.

*Aguilar Piñal, Bibliografía de autores españoles del siglo XVIII, vol. 3 (1984), p. 112; Justino Matute y Gaviria, Anales eclesiásticos y seculares de la muy noble y muy leal, vols. 1 (1887), pp. 21-22; https://dbe.rah.es/biografias/20231/juan-antonio-curiel; Walker, Spanish Politics and Imperial Trade, 1700-1789 (1979).

Price: $3,850.00