In January 1848, the at that time highest court of the realm decided to reject a demand of the Belgian state to overturn a decision by the Ghent Court of Appeal dating back to March 1846. The case concerned the sale in 1819 of a farm which ought to belong to the parish of Middelburg in East Flanders. To resolve the case, the Court of Cassation judged that only those international laws which have been formally accepted by the Belgian Parliament, pursuant to art. 68 old of the Belgian Constitution, could constitute a basis for cassation. I develop on this point by elaborating on the rise of national sovereignty and the pluralist, value-indifferent international order of positivist 19th century international law. Next, I treat the imposed neutrality, settled between the Great Powers, outside of the constitutional framework. Finally, I point to more adventurous legal developments at the turn of the 19th century.
Original languageDutch
Pages (from-to)48-60
JournalTijdschrift voor Bestuurswetenschappen en Publiek Recht
Issue number2
Early online date14 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - 4 Mar 2019

    Research areas

  • constitution, belgian history, international law, legal history, court of cassation

ID: 39535759