Montesquieu: The Spirit of the Laws

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The Spirit of the Laws is, without question, one of the central texts in the history of eighteenth-century thought, yet there has been no complete, scholarly English-language edition since that of Thomas Nugent, published in 1750. This lucid translation renders Montesquieu's problematic text newly accessible to a fresh generation of students, helping them to understand quite why Montesquieu was such an important figure in the early enlightenment and why The Spirit of the Laws was, for example, such an influence upon those who framed the American constitution. Fully annotated, this edition focuses attention upon Montesquieu's use of sources and his text as a whole, rather than upon those opening passages towards which critical energies have traditionally been devoted, and a select bibliography and chronology are provided for those coming to Montesquieu's work for the first time.
 

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Contents

Part 1
1
On laws deriving directly from the nature of the government
8
On the principles of the three governments
19
That the laws of education should be relative to the principles of the government
29
That the laws given by the legislator should be relative to the principle of the government
40
Consequences of the principles of the various governments in relation to the simplicity of civil and criminal laws the form of judgments and the estab...
70
Consequences of the different principles of the three governments in relation to sumptuary laws luxury and the condition of women
94
On the corruption of the principles of the three governments
110
On the laws in their relation with the principles forming the general spirit the mores and the manners of a nation
306
Part 4
335
On laws in their relation to commerce considered in the revolutions it has had in the world
352
On laws in their relation to the use of money
396
On laws in their relation to the number of inhabitants
425
Part 5
457
On the laws in their relation with the establishment of the religion of each country and of its external police
477
On the laws in the relation they should have with the order of things upon which they are to enact
492

Part 2
129
On laws in their relation with offensive force
136
On the laws that form political liberty in its relation with the constitution
152
On the laws that form political liberty in relation to the citizen
185
On the relations that the levy of taxes and the size of public revenues have with liberty
211
Part 3
229
How the laws of civil slavery are related with the nature of the climate
244
How the laws of domestic slavery are related to the nature of the climate
262
How the laws of political servitude are related to the nature of the climate
276
On the laws in their relation with the nature of the terrain
283
Part 6
519
On the origin and revolutions of the civil laws among the French
530
On the way to compose the laws
600
The theory of the feudal laws among the Franks in their relation with the establishment of the monarchy
617
The theory of the feudal laws among the Franks in their relation to the revolutions of their monarchy
667
Bibliography
721
Index of names and places
733
Index of works cited
745
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