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I have indicated is hardly likely to be controverted. But I am acutely conscious of the difficulty of making a selection which will be generally satisfactory. There can be no doubt about the inclusion of the Hague Conventions and other great lawmaking documents of recent times. But when we step beyond these, what principle is to guide our choice? In a case book the general opinion of the legal profession enables a compiler to distinguish between the more important and the less important judgments. But there is no such consensus to appeal to in the case of ordinary treaties and other state-papers. They form an enormous literature, which no one man can know, still less sift and weigh. And when, in addition to them, speeches of statesmen, writings of publicists, and transactions of societies have to be considered, it is clear that the selection from this mass of material of enough to fill a modest book of reference must be more a matter for unfettered individual judgment than for regulation by standardized tests. I could but choose according to my knowledge. But my sense of its limitations was greatly deepened as I went on. Within its boundaries I have taken by preference modern instances; and in arranging them I have followed the order adopted in my Principles of International Law. It was impossible to illustrate every part of the subject. In settling the points to be elucidated I was guided largely by my judgment as to what were likely to be most important in the immediate future, though doubtless I have laid stress almost unconsciously on the questions which interest me most. The selection, for instance, of what may possibly be regarded as a somewhat disproportionate number of documents in connection with the attempts to pierce the Isthmus of Panama, the Monroe Doctrine, and the position of the United States among the American Republics, was due in the first place to a conviction, which all share, of the vast importance of the questions raised by completion of the Panama Canal, but in a secondary degree to the intense interest I have long taken in the gradual evolution of something like social organization in the family of nations. Those whose judgments and predilections are altogether different would naturally have made a different selection. I can only hope that mine may meet the needs of those for whom it was undertaken.
The book is intended for British and American students, and therefore dwells most on questions which concern them most intimately. It is divided into four Parts. The first deals with the nature, origin, and development of International Law, the second with questions arising out of the peaceful relations of states, the third with belligerency, and the fourth with neutrality. Clearly it is possible for a document to cover matters connected with more than one of these departments. Thus it comes about that what appears in one Part may often be used to elucidate questions which arise properly in connection with another Part. A case in point occurs in Part I where I reprint part of a judgment by Sir William Scott in order to point out the way in which Prize Court Judges may, and should, act as exponents of International Law in the process of deciding the case actually before them at the time. But the same extract will serve equally well to illustrate the nature and functions of Prize Courts, a question which falls properly into Part III. Similar instances occur frequently; and a careful teacher will direct the attention of his students to them. It will be found that the book can be used with any good modern treatise on International Law. I have inserted elucidatory notes at the end of many of the documents, but they cannot be regarded as substitutes for a systematic exposition of the subject.
I have laid a great variety of sources under contribution for my subject matter. The extracts from Machiavelli are taken from the piquant translation of The Prince, published in 1674, by Edward Dacres. The English version of Pufendorff is that of Basil Kennett, dated 1706, and the quotations from Vattell come from a translation of 1793. Whewell's translation of 1853 has been used in all but one of the extracts from Grotius. Many of the treaties and state-papers I have used have been printed and reprinted so often that it is superfluous to say from what publications I took them. Where the source is in any way special I have acknowledged it at the end of the document. But it is proper to add that the publications of the British government have been used much more frequently than any others. I am indebted to the Controller of His Majesty's Stationery Office for permission to reproduce them. To him, and to the Foreign Office, I offer my sincere thanks.
I have also to express my gratitude to the International Law Association for allowing me to reprint the comprehensive report presented by their Committee on Aviation in 1913, and to the Syndics of the Cambridge University Press for leave to use Doctor Whewell's translation of the great work of Hugo Grotius, De Jure Belli ac Pacis. My cordial thanks are hereby rendered to Doctor James Brown Scott, the distinguished Secretary of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Director of its International Law Division, for permission to take a few reports from his valuable collection of Cases on International Law, and to reprint various treaties and other documents from The American Journal of Internation Law, of which he is Editor-in-Chief. Doctor John Bassett Moore, Hamilton Fish Professor of International Law and Diplomacy at Columbia University, New York, has kindly allowed me to transfer to my own pages several extracts from his International Law Digest, and I wish to express to him my gratitude for the permission to use such a monument of American industry and scholarship. In preparing the present collection for the press I have received much help from Mr. E. J. Passent, M.A., of Downing College, Cambridge, whose careful research enabled me to find documents I should otherwise have missed. I wish to express my sense of obligation to him for his assistance, and to my friend, Doctor Courtney Stanhope Kenny, Professor of English Law in the University of Cambridge, for valuable advice given to me out of the treasures of his wisdom and experience
T. J. LAWRENCE.
UPTON LOVEL RECTORY, ENGLAND,
July 28, 1914.
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