The Unity of Civilization eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 343 pages of information about The Unity of Civilization.

II.  The unity of mediaeval civilization in its great period (1050-1300) ecclesiastical.  The attempt of the Church to achieve a general synthesis of human life by the application of Christian principle. (1) The control of war and peace and the feudal world:  the Truce of God and the Crusades:  the papacy as an international authority:  the mediaeval conception of war. (2) The control of trade and commerce and the economic world:  just wages and prices:  the mediaeval town. (3) The control of learning and education and the world of thought:  reconciliation of Greek science and the Christian faith:  allegorical interpretation of the world and its effects on natural science.

III.  The mediaeval theory of society.  The organic conception of society:  mediaeval thought naturaliter Platonica.  The one society of mankind.  Hence (1) little conception of the State or sovereignty or State law; but the universal society has nevertheless to be reconciled in some way with the existence of different kingdoms.  Hence, again, (2) no distinction of Church and State as two separate societies:  these are two separate authorities, regnum and sacerdotium, but they govern the same society.  The one society of mankind an ecclesiastical scheme uniting a great variety of personal groupings.

IV.  The influence of law on the development of the kingdom into the state—­a process begun early in England and France, but only generally achieved about 1500.  The new conditions—­geographical, economic, linguistic—­which prepare the way for the new world of the sixteenth century.  The gulf between that world and the old mediaeval world.  The hope of unity to-day.


The Problem in the Ancient World.  Law universal and supreme over mankind (Sophocles, Antigone).  Law arbitrary and varying from place to place (Herodotus).  Nature and convention.  The ‘rightlessness’ of the stranger in antiquity.  The law was a ‘law of citizens’.  Admission of the foreigner to legal protection.  Rome develops a law of the men of all nations (ius gentium), which reacts upon the law of citizens (ius civile), and ultimately coalesces with it.  The law of nature.

The break-up of the Ancient World; the Middle Ages.  The invaders bring their own law with them.  In the kingdoms which they founded each man had his ‘personal law’.  Local Law.  Feudal Law.  The beginnings of National Law:  England, France, Germany.  Roman Law in the Middle Ages.  The Canon Law.

The Modern World.  The reception of Roman Law.  State Sovereignty.  The Modern Codes.  Unity and diversity of law within the political unit.  The world divided into territories of the English Common Law and lands where Roman Law conceptions prevail.  Forces making for unity:  the notion of a ‘law of nature’; the pursuit of common ends.  International law, private and public.

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The Unity of Civilization from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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