The Illustrious Hugo Grotius of The Law of Warre and Peace with Annotations in III. Parts and Memorials of the Author’s Life and Death.

First Edition in English of Hugo Grotius' foundational work: On the Law of War and Peace

The Illustrious Hugo Grotius of The Law of Warre and Peace with Annotations in III. Parts and Memorials of the Author’s Life and Death.

GROTIUS, Hugo.

$22,500.00

Item Number: 111091

London: Printed for T. Warren and William Lee, 1655.

First edition in English of Grotius’ foundational work on international law. Small octavo, bound in full contemporary calf with red morocco spine label lettered in gilt, engraved frontispiece portrait of the author. In very good condition. Rare, with no other examples appearing at auction in the last 80 years.

A pre-eminent contributor to international legal doctrine, Hugo Grotius was an influential Dutch jurist, philosopher, and theologian. In this momentous work, Grotius describes situations in which war is a valid tool of law enforcement and outlines principles for the use of force. Though based on Christian natural law, Grotius advances the novel argument that his system would still be valid if it lacked a divine basis. In this regard he points to the future by moving international law in a secular direction. Barksdale's translation, the first in English, includes an original biographical sketch of Grotius. This edition "is perceived to be part of a larger movement in England aimed partly at setting out an ideological alternative to reformation proposals under discussion and to clarifying the relations between civil and ecclesiastical authority in England" (Butler, xii).

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