Berlin Decree

Berlin Decree

Berlin Decree, 1806, decree issued in Berlin by Napoleon I on Nov. 21 in answer to the British blockade. Claiming that the British blockade of purely commercial ports was contrary to international law, Napoleon retaliated by declaring the British Isles under blockade and forbidding any trade to or from them. The Berlin Decree initiated the Continental System.
The Berlin Decree was issued by Napoleon on November 21, 1806, following the French success against Prussia at the battle of Jena. The decree forbade the import of British goods into European countries allied with or dependent upon France, and installed the Continental System in Europe. It eventually led to economic ruin for France, while little happened to the economy of Britain, who had control of the Atlantic Ocean trade. Other European nations removed themselves from the continental system, which, in part, led to the downfall of Napoleon Bonaparte.

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