Property, Piracy and Punishment: Hugo Grotius on War and Booty in De iure praedae

Concepts and Contexts

Editor: Hans Blom
In 1604-1605 Hugo Grotius wrote De iure praedae, a commentary on the law of booty and prize and a first step towards the Law of War and Peace of twenty years later. Not published in his own times, rediscovered in 1864, and subsequently published, it has been over-interpreted and under-studied. The sixteen essays in this volume discuss De iure praedae, its intellectual sources, personal and political circumstances and over-all consequences, exploring how Grotius as a humanist, theologian, jurist and politician proceeded in this his first exercise in the theory of natural law and rights. The essays are written by an international and interdisciplinary team of specialists, based on papers delivered at a conference at NIAS in Wassenaar in 2005.

Originally published as Volumes 26 (2005), 27 (2006) and 28 (2007) of Brill's journal Grotiana.
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Biographical Note

Hans W. Blom teaches political philosophy and political science at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Collegium Civitas Warsaw. He publishes widely on early-modern political thought and the history of social and political concepts. He is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Grotiana.

Review Quotes

This volume will undoubtedly be a valuable reference point for future studies.
Evan Haefeli, BMGN - The Low Countries Historical Review, 126: 3, 100-101

Table of contents

Introduction, Hans Blom

Hugo Grotius’s Political and Scholarly Activities in the Light of his Correspondence, Henk J.M. Nellen
Grotius, Maritime Intra-Asian Trade and the Portuguese Estado da Índia: Problems, Perspectives and Insights from De iure praedae, Peter Borschberg
Problems of Legal Systematization from De iure praedae to De iure belli ac pacis. De iure praedae Chapter II and the Prolegomena of De iure belli ac pacis Compared, Laurens Winkel
Law, War and Method in the Commentary on the Law of Prize by Hugo Grotius, Merio Scattola
Grotius and Stobaeus, Jon Miller
The Patristic Context in Early Grotius, Silke-Petra Bergjan
Secularization in De iure praedae: from Bible Criticism to International Law, Mark Somos
War, Piracy and Religion: Godfried Udemans’ Spiritual Helm (1638), Joris van Eijnatten
Using the Work. Remarks on the Text of De iure praedae, Jan Waszink
Preparing Mare liberum for the Press: Hugo Grotius’ Rewriting of Chapter 12 of De iure praedae in November-December 1608, Martine Julia van Ittersum
‘Sequuntur dogmatica De iure praedae’ - Law and theology in Grotius’s use of sources in De iure praedae, Franco Todescan
The VOC, Corporate Sovereignty and the Republican Sub-Text of De iure praedae, Eric Wilson
Natural Rights and Roman Law in Hugo Grotius’s Theses LVI, De iure praedae and Defensio capitis quinti maris liberi, Benjamin Straumann
Tuck’s Grotius: De Iure Praedae in Context, George Wright
Beyond the Law. The Image of Piracy in the Legal Writings of Hugo Grotius, Michael Kempe
Grotius and the Origin of the Ruler’s Right to Punish, Gustaaf van Nifterik

Index

Readership

The volume aims at anyone interested in the history of ideas, the early-modern background to law and the social sciences, or the history of the early seventeenth century. It is of prime importance for lawyers, historians and political theorists who need to approach Grotius, as for the specialist.

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