1537 – Pope Paul III banned the enslavement of Indians

Bula del Papa Paulo III.jpg

Sublimis Deus (English: The sublime God; erroneously cited as Sublimus Dei) is a papal encyclical promulgated by Pope Paul III on June 2, 1537, which forbids the enslavement of the indigenous peoples of the Americas (called Indians of the West and the South) and all other people. It goes on to state that the Indians are fully rational human beings who have rights to freedom and private property, even if they are heathen.