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Composite States, or supreme federal governments. -It frequently happens, that one society political and independent arises from a federal union of several political societies; or, rather, that one government political and sovereign arises from a federal union of several political governments. By some of the writers on positive international law, such an independent political society, or the sovereign government of such a society, is styled a composite state. But the sovereign government of such a society might be styled more aptly, as well as more popularly, a supreme federal government.'1
Confederated States; or, a permanent confederacy of supreme governments.—'It also frequently happens, that several political societies which are severally independent, or several political governments which are severally sovereign, are compacted by a permanent alliance. By some of the writers on positive international law, the several societies, or governments, considered as thus compacted, are styled a system of confederated states. But the several governments, considered as thus compacted, might be styled more aptly, as well as more popularly, a permanent confederacy of supreme governments."
As in all independent political bodies there are two elements, the governing and the governed, or the sovereign and the subjects, so in each the sovereign power must be lodged in the hands of either a single individual, or of a body consisting of individuals more or less numerous. A political society in which the sovereignty is lodged in the hands of one, is styled a monarchy; all others are termed aristocracies. Aristocracies are,
Austin p. 264. 2 Austin, p. 264.
however, divided into aristocracies proper, oligarchies, and democracies.
Monarchy.—When the sovereign portion consists of a single member, the supreme government is properly a monarchy, or the sovereign is properly a monarch.
Aristocracy.-When the sovereign portion consists of a number of members, the supreme government may be styled an aristocracy.1
*Republic, or Commonwealth, has the following among other meanings :-1. Without reference to the form of the government, it denotes the main object for which a government should exist. It denotes the weal or good of an independent political society: that is to say, the aggregate good of all the individual members, or the aggregate good of those of the individual members whose weal is deemed by the speaker worthy of regard. 2. Without reference to the form of the government, it denotes a society political and independent. 3. Any aristocracy, or government of a number, which has not acquired the name of a limited monarchy, is commonly styled a republican government, or, more briefly, a republic. But the name “republican government,” or the name “republic,” is applied emphatically to such of the aristocracies in question as are deemed
Governments which may be styled aristocracies, in the generic meaning of the expression, are not unfrequently distinguished into the three following forms: namely, oligarchies; aristocracies, in the specific meaning of the name; and democracies. If the proportion of the sovereign number to the number of the entire community be deemed extremely small, the supreme government is styled an oligarchy. If the ortion be deemed small, but not extremely small, the supreme government is styled an aristocracy, in the specific meaning of the name. If the proportion be deemed large,
the supreme government is styled popular, or is styled a democracy. But these three forms of aristocracy, in the generic meaning of the expression, can hardly be distinguished with precision, or even with a distant approach to it. (Austin, p. 245.)
democracies or governments of many. 4. “Republic also denotes an independent political society whose supreme government is styled republican.'1
Sovereigntyis the supreme power by which any State is governed. This supreme power may be exercised either internally or externally.
Sovereignty is acquired by a State either at the origin of the civil society of which it is composed, or when it separates itself from the community of which it previously formed a part, and on which it was dependent; e.g., the United States declared their independence of England on the 4th of July, 1776.
Internal Sovereignty is that which is inherent in the people of any State, or which is vested in its ruler by its municipal constitution or fundamental laws. This is the object of what has by some been called Internal public law, Droit public interne, by others Constitutional law.
Constitutional Law is defined by Austin to be 'the compound of positive morality and positive law, which fixes the constitution or structure of the given supreme
i Austin, p. 249.
2. The term “sovereign,” or “the sovereign,” applies to a sovereign body as well as to a sovereign individual. “Il sovrano and “le souverain are used by Italian and French writers with this generic meaning. “Die Obrigkeit,” the person or body over the community, is also applied indifferently, by German writers, to a sovereign individual or a sovereign number; though it not unfrequently signifies the aggregate of the political superiors who in capacities supreme and subordinate govern the given society. But, though “sovereign ” is a generic name for sovereign individuals and bodies, it is not unfrequently used as if it were appropriate to the former, as if it were synonymous with “monarch
in the proper acceptation of the term. Sovereign,” as well as “monarch,” is also often misapplied to the foremost individual member of a so-called limited monarchy. Our own king, for example, is neither “sovereign” nor“ monarch:” but, this notwithstanding, he hardly is mentioned oftener by his appropriate title of “ king," than by those inappropriate and affected names.' (Austin, p. 249.)
government, which determines the character of the person, or the respective characters of the persons, in whom, for the time being, the sovereignty shall reside; and, supposing the government in question an aristocracy or government of a number, which determines moreover the mode wherein the sovereign powers shall be shared by the constituent members of the sovereign number or body.'1
External Sovereignty consists in the independence of one political society in respect to all other political societies. It is by the exercise of this branch of sovereignty that the international relations of one political society are maintained, in peace and in war, with all other political societies. The rules by which it is regulated have by some been called External public law, Droit public externe, by others International law.
Sovereignty founded on Consent.-- Every government has arisen through the consent of the people, or the bulk of the natural society from which the political was formed. For the bulk of the natural society from which a political is formed, submit freely or voluntarily to the inchoate political government. Or, changing the phrase, their submission is a consequence of motives, or they will the submission which they render. But a special approbation of the government to which they freely submit, or a preference of that government to every other government, may not be their motive for submission.'
* The distinguishing marks or characteristics of sovereignty and independent political society are:-1. The bulk of the given society are in the habit of obedience or submission to a determinate and common superior,
i Austin, p. 274.
2 Ib. P.
whether that common superior be a certain individual person, or a certain body or aggregate of individual persons. 2. That certain individual, or that certain body of individuals, is not in the habit of obedience to a determinate human superior.'1
Subject–Subjection. To the determinate superior, the other members of the society are subject; or, on that determinate superior, the other members of the society are dependent. The position of its other members towards that determinate superior, is a state of subjection, or a state of dependence. The mutual relation which subsists between that superior and them, may be styled the relation of sovereign and subject, or the relation of sovereignty and subjection.'? The sovereign portion of the British Nation is the Parliament, or tripartite body of King, Lords, and Commons. The word Sovereign, as applied to the reigning king or queen of England, is a mere term of compliment, except when used to express the representative character given by the constitution to the regal head who is clothed with all the insignia of British sovereignty.
Sovereign power is incapable of legal limitation; but considered severally, the members of a sovereign body are in a state of subjection to the body, and may therefore be legally bound, even as members of the body.
A simple illustration may assist in enabling the mind to seize the idea of the civil, as distinguished from the natural man; the political, as distinguished from the natural society. Imagine a city standing in a plain; from without, you see its high wall, its battlements, its moat, and its drawbridge; within, its interlacing streets, thronged with a busy populace; its shops and wareAustin, p. 226. Ib., p. 226.
3 Vide p. 54.