Date of Award

Summer 1962

Degree Type

Master's Essay - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Wearing, S. J.


The subject of this study is the writing of Charles Louis de Secondat Montesquieu, French political and legal philosopher of the first half of the eighteenth century. It is in the two fields of political and legal science that Montesquieu did his greatest writing and had his greatest influence. Therefore, in this study of this man the primary concern will be to present in a clear way his most important contributions to these fields of thought. However, since a man's writings can hardly be understood well without some knowledge of his times and his life, these subjects shall be briefly treated before consideration of his writings. And in conclusion we shall consider what influence Montesquieu's writings have had on society since his day. Thus, the major divisions of this paper are : I. The Times: France in the first half of the Eighteenth Century. II. Live of Montesquieu. III. Writings of Montesquieu. IV. Influence of Montesquieu.