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but the cause in which I am engaged, that has brought about this demonstration. I thank you all the more for that. The cause is indeed a great one, and for this reason I desire to give you some precise information upon our late work. You will excuse me if my statement has the air of a business document.
The Brussels Conference, development of an idea entertained for some years by a number of my countrymen, was the immediate result of a meeting held in New York last May at the house of one of us. At this meeting a committee was chosen for the concentration of our efforts. I was made the president, and Mr. Miles, here present, became the active and devoted secretary. This committee was charged with the duty of taking measures for the convocation of a conference of publicists from different countries of Europe and America, for the purpose of consulting upon the best means of preparing a Code of International Law and of procuring its acceptance. Though the time was already far advanced, we resolved not to let the year pass without action, for the state of public affairs seemed to require action. Invitations were accordingly given in the name of the committee, and on the 10th of October the Conference began its session in Brussels. In spite of obstacles resulting from the distances to be traveled, and the shortness of time, the scientific world was fittingly represented. You shall judge of this if you permit me to tell you who answered this appeal, and what they did. I do not give all the names; I mention a number, from which you may gather the character of the Conference. There were more than thirty present, and there were perhaps as many more who sent in their adhesion. Among the latter, and in the front rank, was Count Scolpis, President of the Arbitrial Tribunal of Geneva, whose letter will be published. In mentioning others, let me speak of France first, since we are in France. She was represented by MM. Cauchy, Massé, and Calvo, all three members of the Institute; by M. F. Passy, economist; and M. Ameline, advocate. Germany sent, with important letters from Mr. d'Holzendorff and others, Mr. Bluntschli, Professor of Law at Heidelberg, and author of a distinguished work on "Droit International Codifié." From Spain we had Mr. de Marcoartu, formerly member of the Cortès, and founder of a prize of 7,500 francs for the best essay on international codification. From Italy we had M. Mancini, formerly Minister of State, Deputy, and Professor of Law in the University of Rome; and M. Pierantoni, Professor of Law in the University
of Naples. From England we had Sir Travers Twiss, formerly Queen's advocate; the Honorable Montague Bernard, Professor of Law at the University of Oxford, and one of the negotiators of the treaty of Washington; Mr. Sheldon Amos, Professor of Law at University College, London; Mr. Henry Richard, member of the House of Commons, and mover of the celebrated resolution which has rendered his name popular throughout the world; Mr. T. Webster and Mr. H. D. Jencken, barristers. From Holland we had M. Bachiene, Counsellor of State, and M. Bredius, member of the House of Representatives. From Belgium we had M. Visschers, Doctor of Law, "Conseiller au Conseil des Mines"; M. Ahrens, Professor in the University of Brussels; M. de Laveleye, Professor in the University of Liège; M. Rolin-Jacquemyns, editor-in-chief of the "Revue de Droit International” at Ghent; M. Goblet d'Alviella, Doctor of Political and Administrative Sciences; M. Couvreur, editor of the "Indépendence Belge," and member of the Chamber of Deputies; M. Bourson, director of the "Moniteur Belge"; M. Tempels, Military Auditor; and M. Faider, Advocate-General at the Court of Cassation. Most of these gentlemen have written with distinction on questions of international law. From America I must not forget to mention Dr. Thompson, who came expressly from Berlin, where he resides, to meet with us. We made, you see, a goodly company.
Now, what have we done? I mention only results; I make
First, we adopted unanimously the following resolutions:
"The Conference declares: 'That an international code, defining with all possible precision the rights and the duties of nations and of their members, is eminently desirable in the interest of peace, good understanding, and common prosperity. Consequently, it is of opinion that nothing should be neglected to promote the preparation and adoption of such a code.
"The Conference reserves the question how far the codification of the law of nations should be simply scientific, or how far it should be incorporated into treaties or conventions formerly accepted by sovereign states."
Secondly, we adopted with the same unanimity another resolution, the importance of which I beg you to observe :
"The Conference declares that it regards arbitration as the means essentially just, reasonable, and even obligatory upon nations to determine
their international differences, which can not be settled by negotiation. It does not affirm that this is applicable to all cases without exception. But it believes that these exceptions are rare, and it is of opinion that no difference should be considered insoluble until after a complete exposition of the point in dispute, after a sufficient delay, and after the most pacific means of settlement shall have been exhausted."
Thirdly, we declared the Conference permanent-that is to say, we formed an Association for the Reform and Codification of the Law of Nations,"* and chose a Council of twelve members to represent it. This Council consists of nine members of the Board and three additional members. It is authorized to manage the affairs of the association for the present year, to designate the time and place of the next session, and to promote the formation of national or local committees for the study and elucidation of questions of international law.
The resolutions on this subject were as follows:
"1. The Conference decides that the name of the association shall be 'The International Conference for the Reform and Codification of the Law of Nations.' It constitutes for the current year its board of officers, as follows: Honorary President, Mr. David Dudley Field; Active President, Mr. Visschers; Vice-Presidents, Messrs. Montague Bernard, Bluntschli, Giraud, and Mancini; General Secretaries, Messrs. de Laveleye, Miles, and Jencken.
"2. It decides, moreover, that the Honorary President, the President, the Vice-Presidents, the Secretaries, and the other members of the Conference shall constitute in their respective countries local committees, with power to add members, to name secretaries, and to do all that may promote the purposes of the Conference. These committees shall maintain relations with the President of the Conference, and make their reports to him.
"3. The Board thus constituted forms, for the present year, the permanent delegation of the Conference, with the duty of preparing a plan of organization for the Conference, and to fix the time and place for the next reunion. The delegation has the right to complete its organization by the addition of three members."
From this time on, and in consequence of the first reunion of the delegates in Brussels, several contributions of papers relating to international money, to the perfecting of instruments of credit,
* It is but just to remark here, as a symptom of the similarity of views which moves thoughtful men from different quarters to similar efforts, that since March, 1873, the Society of the Friends of Peace in France has had a standing committee on the reform and codification of international law.
to postal taxes, and to international arbitration, have been promised to us.
Here is the procès-verbal of this reunion:
"By virtue of the decision taken by the International Conference of October 13, 1873, the permanent delegation of the Conference (represented by Messrs. Field, Visschers, Miles, and Laveleye, who assembled at noon, October 14, 1873, in the salon of Mr. Field) has, in pursuance of the power conferred on it, completed its Board by adding Mr. Henry Richard (M. P.), M. F. Passy, and Mr. Adolphe Prins, advocate at Brussels. Messrs. Richard and Passy, being present in Brussels, immediately took part in the sitting.
"The delegation considered first the publication of the transactions of the Brussels Conference, and decided that, with the aid of the procèsverbaux and the stenographic notes, a report should be made giving the substance of the discussions. The letters of adhesion to the Conference, or extracts from them, are to be published according to circumstances.
"In pursuance of the resolution of the Conference of October 13th, the foreign members, designated by the delegation, will be invited to form about them national and local committees. The members of these committees are not to be of right members of the Conference.
"The delegation will remain judge of admissions to be made hereafter, whether of members of the Conference or of persons to take part in the meetings.
"The presidents of committees will be invited to hold correspondence with the central delegation, and to communicate to it the lists of their members and their regulations.
"On the proposition of M. de Laveleye, it was agreed that efforts should be made to secure the co-operation of professors of international law, and of others distinguished for their qualifications.
"The delegation will determine the place and time for the next session. It appears, however, desirable for the present, that the Conference should meet in the same city with the International Institute of Ghent, two or three days after it, to profit by its labors and the presence of its members.
"In anticipation of this reunion, the delegation will select subjects for discussion, and endeavor to make sure of competent persons to present, papers on the subjects.
"For the present, the following subjects are designated: 'Patents for Inventions, Trade-marks, and Literary Property,' questions proposed by Mr. Webster. 'Instruments of Credit,' question proposed by Mr. Jencken. 'International Money and Postal Taxes,' questions proposed by M. Passy. 'International Arbitration,' question proposed by M. de Marcoartu. These questions are to be treated in an international point of view.
"The delegation will take into consideration the financial organization of the Conference. It then adjourned, subject to the call of the president."
The questions which I have mentioned are, I need hardly say, only indications of those with which the association will occupy itself. We wait for others, remembering that the social residence, so to speak, of our association, is at Brussels, where reside Mr. Visschers, our president, and our secretary, Mr. Prins. M. de Laveleye, general secretary, resides at Liège.
Let me now add that, while our Conference was in the course of formation, another Institution, fruit of the same general desires, was organized at Ghent. I speak of the Institute of International Law, founded in September last, for the purpose of bringing together, in a common work, the most eminent lawyers of both continents, in order to work out and formulate scientifically what may be called "the juridical conscience of the civilized world." This Institute has for its president M. Mancini, for its general secretary M. Rolin-Jacquemyns, and several of us are members of it. Before separating, the Conference, desiring always to maintain, in accord with the Institute, the perfect independence of the two associations, decided to establish with it relations which would help to divide the labor and diffuse the results. The undertaking is great, and all the means possible should be used to accomplish it.
Observe now the resolutions adopted for the establishment of our relations with the Institute :
"The International Conference for the Reform and Codification of the Law of Nations, convened at Brussels, October 10, 1873, on the invitation of the International Code Committee of America;
"That the Institute of International Law, founded at Ghent, September 10, 1873, is an association exclusively scientific, and that its aim is to promote the advancement of international law, to formulate its general principles, and to aid all serious attempts at gradual and progressive codification of the law of nations;
"That, conformably to this view, the Institute of International Law has for the present confined its studies to the three following subjects, viz.: International Arbitration, and the procedure proper for that purpose; an Examination of the three rules of Maritime International Law proposed in the treaty of Washington; and, Rules of Private International Law, intended to secure a uniform decision in conflicts between differing legislations, civil and criminal;
"That the majority of jurists concerned in international law, who were invited by the American committee, are members of the Institute;
"That the Brussels Conference is composed not only of jurists, but of