Reprint of the first edition. Written between 1604 and 1605, De Jure Praedae [On the Law of Prize], which remained in manuscript until 1868, is the earliest significant legal work by Hugo Grotius. His discussion of prize is not restricted to issues of legality; he seeks to determine also whether the capture of enemy material is honorable or expedient. He pursues these issues through an elegant argument based on natural law. Remarkable for its intellectual finesse and literary quality, De Jure Praedae is equally significant as the source of two of his most important writings. Mare Liberum (1609) is based on one of its chapters. It also contains an early version of De Jure Belli et Pacis (1625). In this regard, the book offers a valuable introduction to the issues explored in these later works.
Appended to this reprint is Robert J. Fruin's valuable essay "An Unpublished Work of Hugo Grotius's." Written in 1868 and later republished in English in 1925 in Bibliotheca Visseriana: Dissertationum Ius Internationale Illustrantium, edited by Rijksuniversiteit te Leiden, it remains the principal study of this work.
HUGO GROTIUS [1583-1645] a pre-eminent contributor to international legal doctrine, was an influential Dutch jurist, philosopher andwas an influential Dutch jurist, philosopher and theologian. His other important works include De Jure Belli ac Pacis (On the Law of War and Peace), originally published in 1625, which is widely considered to be the first master treatise on international law, and The Freedom of the Seas (Mare Liberum) (1609) which continues his plea for free trade among all nations.