born 1583, died 1645
Dutch jurist and humanist. He wrote De Jure Belli ac Pacis ('Concerning the Law of War and Peace') (1625), usually considered the first definitive text on international law. In it Grotius contended that natural law prescribes rules of conduct for nations as well as for private individuals. He derived much of the specific content of international law from the Bible and from classical history.
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