Treatise on Law / Edition 1

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This new translation of the Treatise on Law offers fidelity to the Latin in a readable new version that will prove useful to students of the natural law tradition in ethics, political theory, and jurisprudence, as well as to students of Western intellectual history.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

A convenient one-volume translation of the essential texts from the Summa Theologiae on law. Regan's translation is careful, idiomatic, and reliable. With its good Introduction and explanatory notes, this volume should prove to be a popular one among teachers and students of politics and ethics, not to mention those working in medieval philosophy. --Brian Davies, author of The Thought of Thomas Aquinas, Oxford, 1992

The best and most convenient English edition of this classic work. --James B. Murphy, Dartmouth College

This new translation offers fidelity to the Latin in a readable new version that will prove useful to students of the natural law tradition in ethics, political theory, and jurisprudence, as well as students of Western intellectual history. Includes an introduction and explanatory notes, plus a glossary. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780872205482
  • Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/1/2000
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 102
  • Sales rank: 522,470
  • Product dimensions: 5.56 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard J. Regan is Professor of Political Science, Fordham University.

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Table of Contents

Preface ix
Note on the Tex x
Biblical Abbreviations xi
Other Abbreviations xii
Introduction xiii
Works Cited by Aquinas xxiv
Authors Cited by Aquinas xxvi
Q. 90 On the Essence of Law 1
A. 1. Does Law Belong to Reason? 1
A. 2. Is Law Always Ordained for the Common Good? 2
A. 3. Is Any Person's Reason Competent to Make Law? 4
A. 4. Is Promulgation an Essential Component of Law? 5
Q. 91 On Different Kinds of Law 7
A. 1. Is There an Eternal Law? 7
A. 2. Is There a Natural Law in Us? 8
A. 3. Are There Human Laws? 9
A. 4. Did Human Beings Need a Divine Law? 11
A. 5. Is There Only One Divine Law? 13
A. 6. Is There a Law of Concupiscence? 15
Q. 92 On the Effects of Law 18
A. 1. Is the Effect of Law to Make Human Beings Good? 18
A. 2. Do We Suitably Designate Legal Acts? 20
Q. 93 On the Eternal Law 22
A. 1. Is the Eternal Law a Supreme Plan in God? 22
A. 2. Do All Know the Eternal Law? 24
A. 3. Is Every Law Derived from the Eternal Law? 25
A. 4. Are Necessary and Eternal Things Subject to the Eternal Law? 27
A. 5. Are Contingent Natural Things Subject to the Eternal Law? 28
A. 6. Are All Human Affairs Subject to the Eternal Law? 30
Q. 94 On the Natural Law 33
A. 1. Is the Natural Law a Habit? 33
A. 2. Does the Natural Law Include Several Precepts or Only One? 34
A. 3. Do All Virtuous Acts Belong to the Natural Law? 37
A. 4. Is the Natural Law the Same for All Human Beings? 38
A. 5. Can the Natural Law Vary? 41
A. 6. Can the Natural Law Be Excised from the Hearts of Human Beings? 42
Q. 95 On Human Law 44
A. 1. Was It Beneficial That Human Beings Establish Laws? 44
A. 2. Is Every Human Law Derived from the Natural Law? 46
A. 3. Does Isidore Appropriately Describe the Characteristics of Positive Law? 48
A. 4. Does Isidore Appropriately Designate Kinds of Human Law? 49
Q. 96 On the Power of Human Laws 52
A. 1. Should Human Laws Be Framed in Particular Rather Than General Terms? 52
A. 2. Does It Belong to Human Laws to Prohibit All Vices? 53
A. 3. Do Human Laws Command Every Virtuous Action? 55
A. 4. Does Human Law Impose Obligation on Human Beings in the Court of Conscience? 56
A. 5. Is Everyone Subject to the Law? 58
A. 6. Are Those Subject to the Law Permitted to Act Contrary to the Letter of the Law? 60
Q. 97 On Revision of Laws 63
A. 1. Should Human Law Be Revised in Any Way? 63
A. 2. Should Human Laws Always Be Revised for Something Better? 64
A. 3. Can Customs Obtain the Force of Law? 65
A. 4. Can the People's Rulers Dispense Subjects from Human Laws? 67
QQ. 98-108 Note 70
Q. 100 On the Moral Precepts of the Old Law 70
A. 1. Do All the Moral Precepts of the Old Law Belong to the Natural Law? 70
A. 2. Do the Moral Precepts of the Old Law Concern All Virtuous Acts? 72
A. 3. Do We Trace All the Moral Precepts of the Old Law to the Ten Commandments? 73
A. 8. Can Human Beings Be Dispensed from the Commandments of the Decalogue? 75
A. 9. Does the Way of Virtue Fall under Command of the Law? 78
A. 10. Does the Way of Charity Fall under Command of the Divine Law? 80
A. 11. Do We Appropriately Mark Out Other Moral Precepts of the Law besides the Decalogue? 82
A. 12. Did the Moral Precepts of the Old Law Make Human Beings Just? 85
Q. 105 On the Reason for Precepts Governing the Administration of Justice 88
A. 1. Did the Old Law Ordain Fitting Precepts Regarding Rulers? 88
Glossary 92
Select Bibliography 97
Index 101
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