Front Page Titles (by Subject) ABBREVIATIONS - Two Books of the Elements of Universal Jurisprudence
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ABBREVIATIONS - Samuel von Pufendorf, Two Books of the Elements of Universal Jurisprudence 
Two Books of the Elements of Universal Jurisprudence, translated by William Abbott Oldfather, 1931. Revised by Thomas Behme. Edited and with an Introduction by Thomas Behme (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2009).
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WORKS OF SAMUEL PUFENDORF
THE PRESENT WORK
THE TWO BOOKS
THE ELEMENTS OF
an Appendix on the Moral Sphere
Latest and most accurate edition
From the House of John Hayes
Printer to the most Celebrated University
At the Charges of John Creed, Bookseller, Cambridge
TO THE MOST SERENE PRINCE AND LORD, THE LORD KARL LUDWIG, COUNT OF THE RHENISH PALATINATE, LORD HIGH TREASURER AND PRINCE ELECTOR OF THE HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE, DUKE OF BAVARIA, ETC., MY MOST CLEMENT LORD.
Most Serene Prince Elector, Most Clement Lord, Bold indeed is the undertaking of this book, which, without any confidence in its own merit, ventures to approach so great a Prince, and is not ashamed to draw upon itself by its own act those eyes before whose radiance they who appraise themselves according to the consciousness of their own insignificance cannot but blush. And to some it might have seemed more modest to inscribe a less august name at the forefront of so slight a work, were it not a well established fact that those lofty minds beam more blandly upon many men, the more unaffected they perceive to be the estimate which the same have made of their humanity. Your far-famed benevolence towards letters and those that cultivate them, most serene prince, makes us believe that to have made what is no more even than an effort in letters has the value of a commendation in Your eyes; and, although we cherish Your greatness with a religious veneration, we have no fear that the same will suffer any diminution in accepting these meagre offerings. Indeed, You increase the glory of Your eminence rather than diminish it, in that from time to time You condescend to such interests of ordinary men, just as the sun, which does not disdain to pour forth his light even for the low-lying lands of earth to use, retains his glory none the less undimmed on that account.
The kind of portrait of a great Prince which others industriously limn,1 this we may behold at close range most felicitously expressed in You. The blood descended through so many heroes and the dignity but one removed from supreme, together with all the other characteristics which have been set forth as the sole ground for laudations in the case of those whom blind fates, as it were, seem to have thrust forward to such position, we may regard as residing properly and preeminently in You, abounding as You do in Your own resources. You can of Yourself bestow something upon Your ancestors, because through You they have been the glory not of their own ages only; and so easy is it for You to clear Your name of indebtedness to fortune, that fortune herself would be in debt to You, if, indeed, it might please her to bestow her blessings in proportion to each individual’s deserts. Your glory springs up for You out of Your very self. A mind sublime, elevated, of which fortune herself should stand in fear, penetrating moreover, profoundly versed in law human and divine, and one which, if any can, in itself meets the measure required of a Prince. This mind of Yours it is which the age admires in You beyond all else, and proudly displays among its ornaments. And yet that same mind, when it has fulfilled the duty of a Prince, turns aside also to the pleasures of study, and applies with the utmost felicity that well-known vigour to every kind of Wisdom. You could not fill the intervals in Your occupation with a more holy pleasure, nor ought the leisure moments of a mind so noble to be otherwise employed. Here You discover with what sincere veneration the memory of men like Yourself is cherished by those who have no further profit from flattery; and while You hear and see those silent ones, You cease to have need of the ears and eyes of others through which full often facts are presented to Princes in a distorted manner. Nay more, by Your patronage no less than by Your example You cause these studies to flourish among Your friends. The shattered shrines of Wisdom You restore with a most liberal hand,2 and, that nothing be lacking to their splendour, You do not regard it as beneath Your high estate to grant them also the favour of Your presence. By such an honour You give courage to the timid Muses,* nor can their own fortune fail longer to satisfy them after the favour of so great a Patron dispenses itself upon such terms of intimacy.
I too have been persuaded by that humanity of Yours, although I have never yet experienced it, to feel that I should be doing no wrong against Your dignity, if I should venture to offer you this little book with all seemly veneration. While according to the scanty measure of my ability I have striven to set forth in this the principles of universal justice, I foresee for it an approach to Your presence, which, by virtue of the very subject-matter, is the more easy, the more confident Themis† is in claiming by her own right admission to the inmost audience of Princes.