Hague Journal on the Rule of Law

, Volume 11, Issue 2–3, pp 501–508 | Cite as

Against Errors of Intellectual Abstraction: For a Humanist Rule of Law

  • Julian A. SempillEmail author

‘[F]or what is done to any one, may be done to every one: besides, being all members of one body, that is, of the English Commonwealth, one man should not suffer wrongfully, but all should be sensible, and endeavour his preservation; otherwise they give way to an inlet of the sea of will and power, upon their laws and liberties, which are the boundaries to keep out tyranny and oppression; and who assists not in such cases, betrays his own rights, and is over-run, and of a free man made a slave when he thinks not of it, or regards it not, and so shunning the censure of turbulency, incurs the guilt of treachery to the present and future generations.’1

John Lilburne


Somebody once told me that, in certain intellectual circles, it is the done thing to say that one is re-readingso-and-so, say Plato or Proust; never that one is merely ‘reading’ them. The idea is that one has already read every important work; that goes without saying. Now and then, one returns to them, to...



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Copyright information

© T.M.C. Asser Press 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Melbourne Law SchoolThe University of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia

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