The scientific ethics of the Middle Ages, if the Summa of Thomas Aquinas is representative, recognizes, in accordance with its Christian basis, the living God as ultimate principle. For this purpose, it takes on the traditional concept of a law of nature from antiquity, especially of the Romans, and brings it in conjunction therewith. Accordingly Thomas initially differentiates between the eternal law (lex aeterna) and the natural law (lex naturalis). The eternal law is the world-ordering reason in the Divine Spirit (ratio gubernativa totius universi in mente divina existens). This governing reason has per se and with respect to the creation the nature of art, of an example, an idea (artis vel exemplaris vel ideae), similar to how, with an artist, there exists an advance idea of ​​his artwork (understood of the technical, not the aesthetic aspect); but respecting human action, which it moves to the same end, it has the nature of a law. The natural law then is nothing but the “participation” of people in this eternal law, as regards the distinction between good and evil, or the “impression” of the divine light in us. But it is not equivalent to that eternal law, because the governing reason behaves differently in the regulator (God) and in the regulated (people); but it is imprinted in people only to a limited extent and scope, especially in his fallen state. Yet everything that man, by nature, has of moral knowledge and demand, is only the effect of that eternal law in God.

Furthermore, this now leads to the question: how does God relate to this eternal law in Him? Thomas answers with a distinction: the will of God itself and its substance is not subject to the eternal law, but is one and the same with it. But the will of God, in what He wants in terms of creatures (circa creaturas), is subject to the eternal law, insofar as there is a reason for this willed in the divine wisdom. The divine will, therefore, in and of itself is one with reason, but in relation to the creation and rule of the world is subordinated to the standard of reason (rationabilis). As deeply and truly as the source of all moral commandment is acknowledged in the divine reason and wisdom, and likewise the unity of the divine will with the divine reason and wisdom, even so an unacceptable divide is introduced here between the divine will-substance and the divine counsels, which in its further development leads, as actually occurred, to the will-substance or the eternal law in God manifesting itself as mere supreme rule, as something given apart from any decision. This is philosophically the less well-founded because Thomas here characterizes the eternal law or the divine will-substance not as the eternal essence and holiness of God, but as His world plan.[1] In this manner one here borders on diminishing the inner freedom of the divine decree, binding it absolutely to grounds [Gründe] (ratio), while, as we shall see below, people submit to the will of God and His representative [Statthalter] as something without basis.

It is obvious that in this presentation, what is meant by natural law is not the legal sphere but, as with Cicero, the ethical sphere in general – in fact, precisely only the moral sphere. But here the moral law, insofar as it inheres in human nature, is set opposite to the law that is eternal in God and comes to man by way of revelation.[2] Therefore Thomas adds a third category: human law (lex humana). This now encompasses the legal sphere, but only in its character as positive law. Accordingly, with Thomas the legal sphere is only understood by the aspect of its positivity, human sanction, and only by this aspect is it set opposite to the moral, not by the aspect of a particular content, a particular sphere of life. A relation of positive law to natural law in our sense is not the intention and, in accordance with this, cannot be; but the intention is only dictated of the relation of positive law to natural ethics, and it is so construed: all positive law (lex humana) is only the outflow of the natural moral law (secundum quam in particulari disponuntur, quae in lege naturae continentur) and only as far as this is the case, is it justified. But on the other hand, the positive law (lex humana) cannot exhaust the entire compass of the natural law (non omnia vitia prohibere potest), because it pertains to the set [Menge] that is imperfect virtue. So there is no distinction between an idea of ​​law and of morality; but the positive law is nothing else than a partial sanction of the moral law by means of human authority and administration of punishment.

Thus when, with Thomas, the distinction between ethics and law [Recht] in relation to statute [Gesetz] and life spheres (i.e., in terms of the objective aspect) is completely missing, nevertheless he has some albeit very vague notion of such in relation to human virtue and the specifics of entitlement (i.e., in terms of the subjective aspect). He lists justice among the human virtues, and indeed as a particularly excellent one, and for him it consists in giving to each his right according to proportion (aequalitas). The peculiar character of this virtue of justice, as distinguished from the other virtues (proprium inter alias virtutes), he indicates to be that it understands only action vis-à-vis other subjects (ad alterum), not action against itself, that it therefore is not concerned with attitude (non considerato, qualiter ab agente fiat) and that it has only the outward acts as its object, not the inward, hence not the mastery of desires, all of which seems to have the character of the sphere of law. He takes law [Recht] into consideration merely as an object of virtue, that is, the moral character of the individual, not as a singular law [Gesetz] ruling human life, or as a sphere in its own right. He declares the just and the law (justum and jus) to be one and the same. It is in this sense that he conceives of the distinction between natural law and positive law, namely as that which by the nature of the case is due to someone, and that which is due according to the particular determination of the parties or of the people. This indicates that the concept of natural law [Rechts] (jus naturale) and the concept of natural law [Gesetzes] (lex naturalis), which has been discussed above, do not even stand in the remotest connection with him. He does not even consider the judiciary (judicium) to be an element of a higher order, not as an institution, but as an emanation of the virtue of justice.

But even in the sphere of (subjective) virtues, this virtue of justice, for Thomas, does not always exactly match the just in terms of object and character. Its detailed description, namely, is this: as justice regulates man’s actions with other men, it refers either to the whole of the human common condition and orders actions for the common good (bonum commune), or it relates to other individual persons and orders actions such that each is granted his right. The former is general (universalis) justice, the latter particular (particularis). General justice now is at the same time the general virtue for all earthly virtues, which does not mean that, according to concept and essence (essentia), it contains all of them or is the same with them, but that it determines all of them as cause (causaliter), namely orders them for the common good, which is the ultimate goal of all earthly virtue. It is therefore also to be named law-fulfilling justice (justitia legalis) since (earthly) law also seeks nothing else than the common good. Similarly, love is the universal virtue of the heavenly virtues, as their ultimate goal is the heavenly good. Particular justice, that apportions to each individual his right, is again divided into commutative which, assuming the equality of persons, regards only things and processes respecting things as the measure of what is due to each, e.g., in purchase, exchange, and distributive, which regards the people themselves, their divergent worth and the merit of their personal actions, as the measure, e.g., that the wise or the rich are entitled to a greater share in rule.

Accordingly, in this whole doctrine of justice only commutative justice pertains by object and character to the sphere of law. Universal justice includes all earthly virtue, and distributive justice, although it also intervenes in the sphere of law, is still not determined by a fixed external order, but by the reasonableness of contingent [jeweiligen], often merely internal relations. What fills the basic conception of Thomas is the separation of heavenly and earthly virtue, while on the other hand the separation of the moral and the legal order in earthly life itself escapes him, and it is the mingling of the (subjective) virtue of justice with the (objective ) life-order of law which, since the character of the latter intrudes into the experience, brings him to consider the attitude of the actor to be a matter of indifference for the virtue of justice.

This is the outline of the system of ethics in the Middle Ages as portrayed by its most celebrated master.[3]

But in particular with regard to the doctrine of state and (philosophical) state law, the writers of the Germanic Middle Ages – Thomas, Dante, Occam, Marsilio, Andlo, etc.[4] – composed their teaching mainly of two elements, the philosophy of Aristotle and the Christian conception of the state, the latter especially after the example of Augustine, but each modified according the standpoint and consciousness of their time and nation. Essentially the same thoughts and the same manner of reasoning and presentation run equally through all of these writers. The legal-philosophical cultivation of the Middle Ages had more of a traditional than a gradual and evolving nature. Only Dante, as far as philosophical deduction is concerned, was peculiar, in the highest degree, and emancipated even from Aristotle, while he surpassed all other political writers in deep philosophical conception;[5] but precisely this peculiarity had no effect on the further development of science.

Medieval political science took from Aristotle first and foremost the philosophical concepts and categories in general, e.g., the three categories of ens, motus and finis, and the proposition that a mover must be over the moving, to prove that all rule is from God[6] – furthermore, those general propositions of natural observation applicable to politics, for example, that the whole is greater than the parts, that nature everywhere seeks for perfection – finally, however, in particular the lessons and propositions of politics itself, namely the derivation of the state from the social nature (πολιτικὸν ζῶον – sociale animal) of man, the doctrine that the purpose of the state is the good life (εὖ ζῆν, bene vivere), and that this consists in virtue, the distinction between true and false constitutions simply according to whether the rulers or the rule emerged as goal, the classification of forms of state in regnum, politia etc.[7] All this can be found equally in all writers.

In the same way the Christian speculative conception of the state in the Middle Ages rests on the idea of ​​Augustine that the civil order is the result of sin, that states are established by divine providence, that two kingdoms of that sort slog through earthly history, that the Romans have world rule because of their virtue, which is also used as a justification of the Germanic empire, which indeed was viewed as one with the Roman, etc.[8] But there is nevertheless an essential, profound difference between the medieval conception, founded on the Germanic view of life, and that of Augustine. If with Augustine the state (the worldly-minded) appears as a mere work and interest of the earthly kingdom, here it is the realization of God’s kingdom according to this one aspect. Hence, in place of that contempt of the state there emerges here an apotheosis of the state, i.e., of the Germanic-Christian imperial state which maintains justice and peace in the Christian world, by order of God. But nevertheless, here as well this recognition of the state is always due to its relationship with the church.

According to the famous doctrine of the Middle Ages which runs through all these writers, God set two swords over Christianity, the spiritual and the secular, the former in the hands of the pope, the latter in the emperor. They are directly ordained and vouchsafed by Him; He rules on earth through them, and every Christian – yea, because the true God also has power [Gewalt] over those not yet recognizing Him, every person – is subject to both. Therefore, the legitimate supremacy of the pope and the emperor is asserted even over newly discovered and still unconverted princes and peoples, and in Christendom itself, division into several completely independent kingdoms instead of one empire is held to be as illicit as, in the church, its breakup into bishoprics rather than papal primacy (Lampugnano). The dispute between the papal and the imperial party is only about the reciprocal relationship between these two swords. The teaching of the former, which was the first to be developed scientifically, is that the papal power is the higher,[9] because the spiritual and eternal stand above the worldly and earthly, just as, of the two lights, the sun stands over the moon, just as Levi and Aaron over Judah; even more, while the emperor receives his temporal power first through the pope, only the papal power comes directly from God, again by analogy with the election and dismissal of Saul by Samuel, and the offering of the three wise men (kings) before Christ. The pope was therefore the head of Christendom, the kings the arms, for which reason only the pope is anointed on the head, the princes on the arms.[10] The further implementation is then: Christ conferred both swords to Peter and his successor, the spiritual for his own use, the worldly only as a sort of deposit until the future conversion of the Gentiles and of the state. Thus did Pope Sylvester reissue this sword to Constantine after he converted, on behalf of God. Under Charlemagne, however, the Pope as vicegerent of God transferred world empire from the Greeks to the German nation. That was what its legitimacy was based on.

The primacy of the clergy over the secular had something so evident about it that for a long time the opinion of the Germanic peoples was captivated by it. In the end, the temporal power gained its scientific arsenal. In opposition to this, one stated that the spiritual and secular are two different spheres which are independent of one another without any relation of domination and subordination. This idea, so simple and so familiar to us now, was lacking of old; and the imperial power suffered from it. This happened in a decisive way with William of Ockham. Dante separated church and state by the two purposes of human nature, corruptible and incorruptible, but he nevertheless recognizes that the state receives the power of grace from the spiritual kingdom, which the papal blessing infuses in him,[11] and accordingly does not wish the independence of the secular power to be understood so strictly (stricte) that the emperor would not be subject to the pope (in aliquo non subjaceat); rather the emperor owes homage to the pope like the first-born son owes his father. In part, public awareness was still too much in thrall to papal supremacy, and partly Dante was too profound to maintain a complete separation of the two spheres, like the defenders of Ludwig of Bavaria did. But the proper distinction, whereby the spiritual kingdom and the external church authority are not the same, which in this standpoint of Dante’s already is intimated, was, in its fullest insight, only the work of the Reformation. Similarly, it was denied, and not entirely accurately historically, that the papal coronation made Charles the Great into the emperor – rather, this supposedly took place by the will of the people (acclamatio populi). Finally, the independence of the secular authority and its immediate ordination by God was declared by the great acts of state of the nations.

Although the argument about the precedence of the two swords was conducted like this, still everyone was agreed on the idea that this double sword, the papal-imperial empire, was based on immediate divine institution and had absolute prestige. It was thus a power erected for external earthly things as well as for faith and conscience, to which every Christian owed unlimited obedience. To this was attached Daniel’s prophecy of the five world empires,[12] in that the last empire, which puts an end to every other one and endures into eternity, does not point to the otherworldly kingdom of God (which, however, already began here on earth with Christ’s appearance, but only as an inward, not yet revealed kingdom), but to the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation under pope and emperor. This was therefore regarded as identical with the kingdom of God, and usually thought to be an uninterrupted connection and future segue between the two. This conception is found in the most exhaustive but also most glaring way with Peter of Andlau. In his presentation, the Augustinian economy of the heavenly (heavenly-minded) empire is transformed into a formal dynastic succession. From God there first reigned Adam, Abel, the Patriarchs, judges, the kings and priests of Judah until Christ, and since then, again from God and in Christ’s place, there reign Pope and Emperor, whom the Pope handed the secular power. The last emperor will lay down the trappings of his kingdom in the church, and there they will be taken up by Christ. Thus, from the creation until the resurrection not even the gap of an interregnum between the divinely authorized rulers was left.[13]

Apart from this theocratic foundation of the state and its authority, the political theory of the Middle Ages also had another peculiar, although subordinate element, the analogy according to divine relations. Augustine like other Fathers loved to conceive of the natural creation blatantly allegorically in explanation of ethical-religious relations. In similar manner, the scholastics and the political writers of the Middle Ages sought the solution of the question of state arrangement often in comparison with divine models. In this manner, the monarchical form of government was established by analogy with the unity of divine dominion,[14] like the obligations of the sovereign and other things.

Both the theocratic and this symbolizing element are now appear much more strongly everywhere in the representatives of the spiritual power. The supporters of the secular power are much more sober and approach more closely to our present level of development [Bildung].

The writers of that time could not have been unaware that the doctrine of Aristotle, which they venerated, was not consistent with their Christian-ecclesiastical life valuation. They sometimes permitted themselves a different judgement than Aristotle’s in specific cases, especially on the worth of the forms of government, where they almost all declare not the Aristotelian polity [Politik] but, according to Christian-Germanic custom, monarchy,[15] usually elective monarchy after the model of the German emperorship, to be the best form of government. On the whole, however, they seek to reconcile the contradiction of the two elements that they include in their teachings, by distinguishing the spheres, attributing the secular to Aristotle, the spiritual to the Christian idea. The “Philosophus” (i.e., Aristotle) ​​could have known nothing about the entire extent of revelation and grace, therefore also nothing of the priesthood, the spiritual regiment, hence the entire ecclesial side; but for matters in which no revelation exists is and what man can attain to with his natural capacity, the Philosophus is and remains the authority, and to this pertains in particular the arrangement of the secular regiment. The same distinction is applied to the purpose of the state, which is set, in accordance with Aristotle’s procedure, in the good, i.e., the virtuous life. Here also a distinction is made between on the one hand earthly virtue that is recognized by reason and which man is able to achieve on his own, as well as in conjunction herewith their earthly well-being, this forms the sphere of ​​the state (regnum); and on the other hand, the virtue that can only be known through revelation and attained only by divine grace and means of salvation, and corresponding to this, eternal well-being, and this forms the sphere of the church (sacerdotium). This explanation is found in Thomas Aquinas[16] and others, but at its clearest and most complete in Dante,[17] although with him it is not to ground the relationship to Aristotle, but the relationship between emperor and pope. From this side, inappropriate to grace and revelation, is yielded the task of the state to care for worship, which was also lacking in Aristotle.

Indeed, such a delimitation of the two spheres by no means eliminates the opposition between these two elements, while the Christian idea finds its application in the secular spheres and is also found amongst them. For this reason, this contradiction remains unresolved through their entire presentation. For instance, it is contradictory when they base the state in accordance with Aristotle on the socializing nature or the mutual neediness of man (humana indigentia),[18] but at the same time view it theocraticatically as God’s representative, or when they investigate the worth of different forms of government in accordance with Aristotle’s guidance, and also teach that God has set monarchical power, and indeed a single one, over all of Christendom. For with them this does not even have the coherence that, for instance, the reasons for divine institution should be set forth using Aristotelian notions, such that God established states because people need each other (which in fact would also not be entirely appropriate); instead they run connectionless adjacent to each other. Therefore a dualism runs through the legal philosophy of the Middle Ages, there being two elements without penetration, without a unifying principle.

Similarly, they are also unaware of how the Aristotelian conception, which is derived from Greek life, is completely heterogeneous to the state of the Germanic Middle Ages, where they lived and to which they were attached. Hence this invading ancient cultural knowledge [Bildung] already contains the first seed of breaking through the medieval condition and giving European countries a character approximating to the ancients, such as they have at the present day. But even more than that. In their Germanic appropriation, the lessons drawn from Aristotle lack the objectivity of the Greeks – the consideration of the state as a given, higher whole, in which the individual is subsumed. Therefore, where the Christian element, the positive divine sanction, recedes, the state will no longer manifest itself as a given power over the people, but rather, in the principle of subjectivity, as the work and the mere object of people. In this manner the traces of today’s doctrine of popular sovereignty are already sometimes found in the medieval writers. This is very decided and well-developed in the case of Marsilius of Padua, who of course also had other ideas in his surroundings. According to him, the people – i.e., the totality of the citizens or their valentior pars – is the legislator, or the first and actual efficient cause of the law. The same is likewise also the cause of the princely power (principatus) and also has the power to punish the princes in cases of grosser violations of the law (corrigendi). The doctrine of Aristotle, that genuine state constitutions are those in which the government likewise is directed to the purpose of the obedient (the people), Marsilius conceives in this manner, that government must be conducted according to the will and the agreement of citizens (voluntas et consensus civium). He declares that for this reason elective monarchy is a more adequate form of government than hereditary monarchy.[19] All of this is indeed no longer specifically medieval, but already the transition to the modern political view.

But there emerges through these specifically medieval ideas a completely new principle in the philosophy of law: the personal will of God, which is nowhere found in ancient times, at least not as a scientific principle. Accordingly, the state not only has the ideal sanction of the good and the beautiful as with the Greeks, but also the reality of divine institution. Likewise there also emerges in world history under an ethical principle: the divine will. Among the Greeks, an ethical power is to determine the way in which states are to be constructed; but how they really are constructed is an affair of accidental human decisions and accidental events. Here, however, the real nature of states, the historical leading of their destinies is determined by ethical power (the divine will). World empires and the contemporary construction of states manifest themselves as its work. The divine sway in history is here recognized, and also becomes one, and in fact the most important, aspect of scientific conceptualization.

This principle, which is true in itself, appears here in crude, external shape – as a theatrical principle. That is, everywhere a direct manifestation of God’s will is assumed; accordingly God ordained the authorities in church and state through a visible personal act (while Christ in person constituted the pope and through him the emperor), and in this specific ordination, not merely in a general divine commandment, their regard is founded.[20] Similarly, the events of world history are the direct expression of His will, and constitutional questions are decided according to His expression. That God allocated world rule to the Romans because of their virtue, and the pope in the name of God conferred it on the Germans, is the ethical and the legal basis on which science erected the reputation of the supreme power of that time, and with regard to the former statement respecting the divine institution of the Roman Empire, the commandment of God that all nations must obey them and their successors is regarded as evidence of the virtues of the Romans, their victories as God’s judgments, the oracle and finally the fact that Christ was born under Roman rule, that by which God recognized its legitimacy. This is the presentation even with the great and sober Dante.[21] The right of the Jewish people to destroy the Canaanites, which Michaelis inappropriate enough judges by today’s principles of international law, had its basis in such directly expressed divine will and concrete command. The leading of the Jewish people was in truth theocratic by way of exception; for the Jewish people is the type of God’s eternal kingdom. But the medieval writers treated the whole of world history in this manner.

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[1] For a more detailed elucidation of the question itself, cf. vol. II, book I of this work.

[2] Also in the book de reg. princ. Lib. I, cap. 15 it can be seen that no distinction is yet made between law and virtue.

[3] With regard to all of this, cf. Thomas’s Summa theologiae, in particular prima secundae quaest. 91-96, secunda secundae quaest. 57-59.

[4] Thomas ab Aquino (…1274) Summa op. cit. Idem, De regimine principum (the question regarding the partial or entire inauthenticity of this writing does affect the argument here, in that it is in any case a document of the thinking [Bildung] of the Middle Ages – on the other hand, Thomas’s commentary on Aristotle’s Politics is of no significance to us, in that it only elucidates and provides none of the commentator’s own insights). – Dante Alighieri (…1321), de Monarchia. – William of Ockham (…1347) dialogus. – Marsilius of Padua (…1328), defensio pacis – (by Goldast. Monarchia St. Rom. Imper.). Petrus de Andlo, de Imperio Romano 1460.

 

[5] So, for example, Dante declares to be the goal of the state (i.e., The Christian empire) that the human race as a whole engage the entire force of possible intelligence (actuare semper totam potentiam intellectus possibilis) initially for knowledge, and then for action, p. 60. Like Kant, he distinguishes between freedom of the will and caprice [Willkür], p. 75. Sinning for him is nothing other than progredi ab uno spreto ad multa (p. 84). Then: “Ex iis liquet, quod jus cum sit bonum, proprius in mente Dei est, et cum omne, quod in mente Dei est, sit Deus (juxta illud: quod factum est in ipso vita erat) et Deus maxime se ipsum velit: sequitur, quod jus a Deo, prout in eo est, sit volitum. Et cum voluntas et volitum in Deo sit idem, sequitur ulterius, quod divina voluntas sit ipsum jus” [From these things it is clear that the right is a good, it is God’s own, in the mind, and with all that in the mind of God, He is God (as it is said that what was in him was life;) and since God principally wills himself: it follows that the right from God, inasmuch as He is, belongs to the thing willed. And when he had the will and the thing willed in God is the same, it follows further that the divine will is the right itself]. These examples are sufficient to give an idea of Dante’s speculative treatment.

[6] Thomas de reg. lib. III, cap. 1-3. Similarly Marsilius, Andlo.

[7] Thomas’s investigations (de reg. princ. lib. II) into the material conditions and material goals of the state (situation, climate, means of subsistence, highways) can also be viewed as a reproduction [Nachbild] of Aristotelian treatment, albeit a completely free reproduction.

[8] Thomas de reg. princ. I. III, cap. 4-6.

[9] Thomas lib. III, c. 10. See also Dante’s counterargument, lib. III, p. 140.

[10] Cap. un. X de sacra unct. (I. 15.)

[11] “Si ergo dico, quod regnum temporale non recipit ease a spirituali, nec virtutem (quae est ejus auctoritas) nec etiam operationem simpliciter; sed bene ab eo recipit ut virtuosius operetur per lucem gratiae, quam in coelo et in terra benedictio summi pontificis infundit illi” (Lib. III, p. 145).

[12] Thomas, de reg. l. III, ch. 12-16.

[13] Peter of Andlau, Book I, ch. 1, ch. 13-15, and Book II, ch. 8 (pp. 11, 12, 45, 55, 65), finally in particular the conclusion: “de Romani imperii exitu et ejus finali consummatione” (p. 140).

[14] Peter of Andlau, p. 34. Thomas Aquinas, de reg. princ. I, 12. Dante, p. 66, according to whom it is not the rule of the state that approaches divine rule; the human race itself through unity (which yields it dominion) approaches God.

[15] Thomas nevertheless was able to reconcile this by characterizing the appropriate form as polity [Politie] for the city (civitas) and monarchy for the territory [Land] (provincia). In the Summa he declares the mixed form generally to be the best. But it is traditionally the case in the medieval conceptualization that the concept of monarchy rules out subordination to the laws [Gesetze]. Thus Thomas, de reg. princ., p. 300; Andlau, p. 32.

[16] Thomas, de reg. princ., I, ch. 15. Likewise Marsilius in Goldast, II, pp. 157-164.

[17] Dante, op. cit., lib. III, p. 167, where among other things the following statement is found: “Propter quod opus fuit homini duplici directivo secundum duplicem finem: scilicet summo Pontifice, qui secundum revelata humanum genus produceret ad vitam aeternam, et lmperatore, qui secundum philosophica documenta genus humanum ad temporalem felicitatem derigeret.”

[18] Thomas (de reg. II, ch. 2) admittedly deduces the necessity of the state not merely on physical mutual need but also on the requirement of the community for intellectual need and the exercise of some virtues (particularly, justice and friendship). But entirely independently of this he teaches (lib. III, ch. 9) a God-ordained hierarchy of authorities: men over animals and things, princes over men, the church over princes. Likewise Andlau, p. 12, cf. p. 11.

[19] Cf. Goldast, Monarch. II, pp. 169, 175, 185, 163, 165. When in opposition to this, Dante (76) says of the king (emperor), “qui minister omnium procul dubio habendus est” (with an expression similar to Frederick the Great later on), this has an entirely different, innocuous meaning.

[20] Cf. this work, Vol. II, Book IV, ch. 4: “The Divine Institution of the State.”

[21] Dante lib. II, pp. 120-128. Andlau, p. 100.