Abbé Castel de Saint-Pierre is often referred to as a mere political thinker. His utopist plan for "Perpetual Peace" (1712, 1713) was derided by contemporaries, but hailed by 19th century pacifists or present-day Enlightenment scholars. My contribution approaches Saint-Pierre through his personal relations with the main foreign policy actors of his age. I argue that the 1717 version of his pacification plan started from specific diplomatic issues, tied to norm hierarchy and precedence for treaty clauses over domestic fundamental norms. His correspondence with Dubois during the elaboration of the Quadruple Alliance and at the time of the execution war against Spain amply demonstrate his knowledge of contentious cases and political interest.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of the History of International Law / Revue d'Histoire du Droit International
StateSubmitted - 12 Jan 2018
EventTraning - Ideas - Practices - Maison de la Recherche (Paris-Sorbonne)/Fondation Biermans-Lapôtre, Paris, France
Duration: 18 May 201719 May 2017

    Research areas

  • legal history, international law, diplomacy, 18th century history, early modern history, french history, european history

ID: 36039045