Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAP. I.: Idea of this Book. - Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws
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CHAP. I.: Idea of this Book. - Charles Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, Complete Works, vol. 1 The Spirit of Laws 
The Complete Works of M. de Montesquieu (London: T. Evans, 1777), 4 vols. Vol. 1.
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Idea of this Book.
THAT the laws of education ought to be relative to the principle of each government has been shewn in the preceding book. Now, the same may be said of those which the legislator gives to the whole society. The relation of laws to this principle strengthens the several springs of government; and this principle derives from thence, in its turn, a new degree of vigour. And thus it is, in mechanics, that action is always followed by re-action.
Our design is, to examine this relation in each government, beginning with the republican state, whose principle is virtue.