The Idea of a League of Nations: Prolegomena to the Study of World-Organization (Classic Reprint).
Book format: An electronic version of a printed book that can be read on a computer or handheld device designed specifically for this purpose.
Publisher: Forgotten Books (27 Sept. 2015)
By: Unknown Author (Author)
Unification of human affairs, to the extent at least of a cessation of war and a world-wide rule of international law, is no new idea: it can be traced through many centuries of history. It is found as an acceptable commonplace in a fragment, De Republica, of Cicero. It has, indeed, appeared in, and passed out of, the foreground of thought, and reappeared there, again and again.
Hitherto, however, if only on account of the limitations of geographical knowledge, the project has rarely been truly world-wide, though in some instances it has comprehended practically all the known world. Almost always there has been an excluded fringe of barbarians and races esteemed as less than men.
The Roman Empire realized the idea in a limited sphere and in a mechanical, despotic fashion. It was inherent in the propaganda of Islam - excluding the unbeliever. It was the dream of the mediæ:val Church - a dream which, partly in harmony, partly in rivalry, with the mediæ:val Empire, it was constantly trying to realize, however ineffectually. (But here again the line was drawn against the infidel.) It may be said that the political unity of Christendom, overriding states and nations, was the orthodox and typical doctrine of the Middle Ages. The individual states were regarded as being, in the nature of things, members of one great body politic, presided over by the Pope or the Emperor or both. It was the idea of the world-supremacy of the Empire which inspired Dante's De Monarchia: but, as Lord Bryce has remarked, 'Dante's book was an epilogue instead of a prophecy.'
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