« PreviousContinue »
BLUNTSCHLI'S INTERNATIONAL LAW
Digest OF CASES IN BANKRUPTCY.
Benjamin on the Law of Sale, 541; Gerard's New York Titles, 543; Mayer's
Supplement to the Maryland Code, 543; Common Bench Reports, New
List of New Law BOOKS PUBLISHED IN ENGLAND AND AMERICA
SINCE JANUARY 1, 1869.
SUMMARY OF EVENTS
v. Horwitz, 572; Tax Cases, 574. California – Civil Rights Bill, People
Lyndhurst and Brougham, 585; Libel, Privilege, Wason v. Walter, 586; Female Suffrage, 588; The Jamaica Case, 589; Prosecution of the Ritualists, Martin v. Mackonochie, 589; Necessaries for Infants, Genner v. Walker, 590; M. Berryer, 593; Confessions, 595; Attorney's Costs, 596; A Difficult Question, 596.
The Bankruptcy Digest has, by its length, crowded out the English Digest. The next number of the Law Review will contain the English cases for six months.
BLUNTSCHLI'S INTERNATIONAL LAW.
The universal presence of law among men is the necessary result of their social nature. It is impossible to imagine a community without rules for its government, and it is equally impossible that man should continue to exist except as a member of society. It is therefore as natural for him to make laws, to live under them and to enforce their precepts, as it is to hunt, to fish, or to cultivate the soil. If a hundred men and women of diverse origin and culture should suddenly find themselves thrown together on a desert island, a body of rules would soon come into being to regulate their fortuitous society. The intercourse with each other, which they could not avoid, and which they would naturally seek, would instantly demand laws to define and protect their mutual rights and interests. They would indeed be at liberty to determine, to some extent, what those laws should be. The customs to grow out of their intercourse would depend more or less upon their intelligence, their culture, and the antecedents of their best members. But they would not be free to exist without laws, without mutual rights and obligations, and without some means to enforce them. In this sense all must admit that government is the work of the same high power which called the universe into being and provides for its continued existence. Mankind cannot exist without social organization, and social organization is law.
Ubi societas ibi jus. In the same high necessity the Law of Nations takes its origin. So
The Asiatic world at last abandoned its time-honored traditions, and advanced to give the hand to the rising system.
While Turkey, in the West, proclaims that henceforth she adopts the maxims of Christian civilization, the oldest government in the East sends an American diplomat on a mission of friendship and commerce to every civilized power. And thus the commonwealth of nations, the problem of philosophers, and the dream of poets, is growing into harmonious, symmetrical, and universal being. To frame the laws which shall govern this majestic fabric, to found securely the system which shall protect and sustain it, to perpetuate and enforce the maxims of justice and equity which can alone preserve it, this is the weighty task which lies before the jurist of to-day.
The book of Dr. Bluntschli marks an epoch in the prosecution of this important work. The Law of Nations has hitherto been embodied in conventions between States, and in the writings of commentators, who have labored to deduce from precedent and international usage a system of law. Bluntschli has gone a step further, and has sought to state this system in the form of an harmonious and logical code. To attempt so arduous an undertaking required not only thorough and comprehensive learning, but a courage not easily daunted. He brought to his task a mature and well-balanced mind, ripe and thorough scholarship, and a practical familiarity with public questions. He was born in Zurich, and studied under Savigny, Hasse, and Niebuhr. In the politics of Switzerland he played a distinguished part, adopting a position as far removed from the dreams of European republicanism as it was from the reactionary policy of the ultramontanists. In 1847, he was called to the chair of Public and International Law at Munich, where he remained until 1861, when he took the place of the distinguished Von Mohl, at Heidelberg. He is widely known in Europe as a voluminous publicist, and his works on public law are held in the highest esteem. The whole of his very industrious and scholarly career has been spent in the consideration of questions of constitutional and international jurisprudence, and few men have ever spoken upon those topics with more weight or authority than he. He was therefore eminently fitted for the difficult task he has so successfully achieved. It was suggested to him, he tells us, by the well-known instructions for the American armies, drawn up at the request of Mr. Stanton by Dr. Lieber, to whom the work