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In his editorial preface to Formal Bases of the Law, Professor Drake offers a detailed summary of Del Vecchio’s historical survey of the philosophy of law. Drake reiterates that “the struggle for better definition of law has resulted in continually widening the practical application of law. In like manner it may be shown that the constant broadening of the metaphysical bases of law has been accompanied by improvements in its practice, and to this purpose we may well address ourselves.” From Aristotle to Grotius, to neo-Kantians and neo-Hegelians… “Law is neither force simply nor growth simply, but law is right reason, existing in the nature of man himself ….”


Preface to Formal Bases of the Law, by G. Del Vecchio, 1914. Reprinted 1969.