Vattel, Emerich de

Vattel, Emerich de ā´mərĭkh də vätĕl´ [key], 1714–67, Swiss philosopher and jurist. He served (1746–58) as Saxon minister at Bern and later in the cabinet of Augustus III at Dresden. He is famous for one book, Droit des gens ou, Principes de la loi naturelle appliqués à la conduite et aux affaires des nations et des souverains (1758 tr. Law of Nations, 1760). This book, founded on the writings of Christian von Wolff, was important chiefly because it supplied a justification for liberal revolution. It also illustrated the growing attention to international law based on natural laws that were superior to positive legislation.

See P. P. Remec, The Position of the Individual in International Law (1960).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.