First English Edition of Burlamaqui's Politic Law Burlamaqui, J[ean] J[acques] [1694-1748]. The Principles of Politic Law: Being a Sequel to the Principles of Natural Law. Translated into English by Mr. Nugent. London: Printed for J. Nourse, 1752. [viii], 372 pp. Octavo (8" x 5"). Contemporary speckled calf, raised bands, letting piece and gilt ornaments to spine. Some rubbing to extremities with wear to spine ends, boards partially detached but secure, corners bumped, a few minor early inkstains to boards, early armorial book plate to front pastedown. Moderate toning to text, light foxing in places, offsetting to margins of endleaves. Early struck-through signature to head of title page, interior otherwise clean. $1,500. * First edition in English. The sequel to The Principles of Natural Law, his other major work, The Principles of Politic Law develops his thesis that international law is based on natural law and examines the principles of sovereignty with respect to considerations such as foreign rights, the necessity of war, the concept of absolute power, public treaties and economic factors. Burlamaqui, a Swiss jurist and professor of civil and natural law at Geneva, outlined a constitutional system based on principles similar to those of the American founding fathers. "Burlamaqui formulated the principles of popular sovereignty, of delegated power, of a constitution as a fundamental law, of a personal and functional separation of powers into three independent departments...and finally, he provided for an institutional guardian of the fundamental law" (Harvey). Burlamaqui's other great achievement was to put Pufendorf's theories into systematic form. Harvey, Jean Jacques Burlamaqui: A Liberal Tradition in American Constitutionalism 178-179. English Short-Title Catalogue T112807.
Book number 65211