First Edition of The First Major English Text on International Law Selden, John [1584-1654]. Mare Clausum Seu de Domino Maris Libri Duo. Primo, Mare, ex Jure Naturae Seu Gentium, Omnium Hominum non Esse Commune, Sed Dominii Privati seu Proprietatis Capax, Pariter ac Tellurem, Esse Demonstratur. Secundon, Serenissimum Magnae Britanniae Regem Maris Circumflui, ut Individuae Atque Perpetuae Imperii Britannici Appendicis, Dominum Esse, Asseritur. London: Excudebat Will. Stanesbeius, pro Richard Meighen, 1635. [xxvi], 304,  pp. Endleaf preceding title page, which is counted in collation, and front free endpaper lacking. Copperplate map, woodcut map, six woodcut text illustrations. Folio (11-1/2" x 7-1/2"). Contemporary sheep, raised bands and lettering piece to spine. Moderate rubbing to boards, heavier rubbing to extremities, corners bumped, wear to head of spine, small section of backstrip partially detached, front hinge starting, rear hinge cracked. Title page printed in red and black. Light toning to text, somewhat heavier in places, light soiling to a few leaves, faint dampstaining to head of text block, light soiling, early paper repair, tiny signature (?) in early hand and faint later library stamp to title page, another faint library stamp to foot of p. , early owner stamp to margin of p. 147. $1,500. * First edition. Selden's Mare Clausum is the most famous British reply to the argument of Hugo Grotius's Mare Liberum, which denied the validity of England's claim to the high seas south and east of England. Selden, argued that England's jurisdiction extends to all waters surrounding the isles. "Like all Selden's work, the Mare Clausum is replete with learning.... In the early seventeenth century great importance attached, and considerable interest still attaches to the question of how far the open sea or main ocean, beyond the immediate vicinity of the coasts, may be appropriated by one nation to the exclusion of others.... The purpose of the Mare Clausum is twofold. The first book argues that by the law of nature or nations the sea is not common to all men, but is as much as the land susceptible of private dominion and property. In the second book it is maintained that the lordship of the circumfluent and surrounding ocean belongs to the Crown of Great Britain, as an inseparable and.
Book number 71613