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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 57.djvu/94

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POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

been such men, as, for example, Rudolf Gneist, whose great work on English Constitutional Law and History has become a classic. But, as a rule, there is among text writers on this branch of law and among the eminent jurists who have hitherto been connected with international tribunals much "provincialism in thought and conception," if the phrase may be allowed, and to overcome it the future jurists who shall take part in international contests before the high tribunal of the nations will require to be more thoroughly grounded in the history and evolution of law in general and in the study of comparative law, both private and public, in particular, than their predecessors have been.[1] In this connection it is not too much to hope that the unifying influence of an international tribunal will eventually exercise a good effect in promoting the solution of various perplexing problems on the private side of international law, or what is known as "conflict of laws."

Having indicated some directions in which the growth of international law will be likely to be promoted by the tribunal, the question suggests itself whether the jurisdiction of the international court will eventually be enlarged beyond the scope at present contemplated by the Convention of The Hague. Will the time ever come when such a court shall take cognizance of various matters which now lie without the sphere of "business disputes and questions of a juridical nature" and within that of essential interests, honor, race, and religious policies and ideals? The statement, which is sometimes heard, that such will never be the case, does not seem warranted when we regard the growth of law in general, and indeed the development of this particular branch of it, in the past, but it is safe to say that the time is a long way off; it will depend on many things: the efficiency of the court itself, the continued growth of neutral rights, the increasing necessity for preserving international peace, and the infinite forces which have tended to widen the jurisdiction of municipal law.[2]

In the growth of systems of "National Law"[3] there has been evolved from small beginnings an ever-widening jurisdiction. Impartial courts have inspired confidence which stimulated individuals to seek their aid, and this has reacted to extend their jurisdiction, until now the most intimate and complex relations between individuals, at one time wholly without their sphere, are in these days submitted as a matter of course to judicial settlement. Even questions of individual honor are settled according to the well-developed


  1. As evidence of increased attention to this matter in Germany, see Wertheim, Wörterbuch des Englischen Rechts.
  2. See Le Droit de la Paix, by M. Descamps.
  3. In contradistinction to "International Law."