Nations


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Related to Nations: United Nations

NATIONS. Nations or states are independent bodies politic; societies of men united together for the purpose of promoting their mutual safety and advantage by the joint efforts of their combined strength.
     2. But every combination of men who govern themselves, independently of all others, will not be considered a nation; a body of pirates, for example, who govern themselves, are not a nation. To constitute a nation another ingredient is required. The body thus formed must respect other nations in general, and each of their members in particular. Such a society has her affairs and her interests; she deliberates and takes resolutions in common; thus becoming a moral person who possesses an understanding and will peculiar to herself, and is susceptible of obligations and rights. Vattel, Prelim. Sec. 1, 2; 5 Pet. S. C. R. 52.
     3. It belongs to the government to declare whether they will consider a colony which has thrown off the yoke of the mother country as an independent state; and until the government have decided on the question, courts of justice are bound to consider the ancient state of things as remaining unchanged. 1 Johns. Ch. R. 543; 13 John. 141, 561; see 5 Pet. S. C. R. 1; 1 Kent, Com 21; and Body Politic; State.

References in classic literature ?
It is of high importance to the peace of America that she observe the laws of nations towards all these powers, and to me it appears evident that this will be more perfectly and punctually done by one national government than it could be either by thirteen separate States or by three or four distinct confederacies.
Is it not (we may ask these projectors in politics) the true interest of all nations to cultivate the same benevolent and philosophic spirit?
Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would accept war rather than let it perish.
On its borders I trust we stand; and the throes that now convulse the nations are, to my hope, but the birth-pangs of an hour of universal peace and brotherhood.
In came the era of speed and the finely organized nations.
When we came near that coast, and began to rejoice at the prospect of ease and refreshment, we were on the sudden alarmed with the sight of a squadron of ships, of what nation we could not at first distinguish, but soon discovered that they were three English and three Dutch, and were preparing to attack us.
The distance of the United States from the powerful nations of the world gives them the same happy security.
and bring the absolute power to destroy other nations under the absolute control of all nations.
She was the colossus of the nations, and swiftly her voice was heard in no uncertain tones in the affairs and councils of the nations.
If your nation beat them, how came you to be taken?
Of the various European settlements upon this continent, which have finally merged in one independent nation, the first establishments were made at various times, by several nations, and under the influence of different motives.
I say adversaries, for on recalling such proud memories we should avoid the word "enemies," whose hostile sound perpetuates the antagonisms and strife of nations, so irremediable perhaps, so fateful - and also so vain.