Grotius and the International Politics of the Seventeenth Century
Grotius’ major works, especially Mare Liberum and more subtly De Jure Belli ac Pacis, owe much to his political ambitions, and also to his experience of public affairs. A protégé of Johan van Oldenbarnevelt and supporter of the position of the Dutch East India Company, Grotius was successively pensionary of Rotterdam (1613–18), in prison at Loewenstein (Loevestein) Castle (1619–21), and in exile (1621–45). Among the motives determining Grotius’ activities, his political aspirations played a constant and considerable role.
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