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THE MONROE DOCTRINE.
The old platform of religious exclusives-—“ Resolved, 1st, that the earth belongs to the saints; and-Resolved, 2dly, that we are the saints":
?—was not original with the fanatics to whom it has been imputed. It is, in fact, but a summary of the code of public law which prevailed in Europe at the period when America was discovered. The nations calling themselves Christian assumed the right of seizing and occupying all lands inhabited by barbarians, and in case of a dispute as to boundaries or priority of claim, the Pope was recognized as the supreme judge and divider among them, from whose decrees there was no appeal but to the ultimate arbitrament of arms. A comparison of this simple code with that complicated system of rules by which the intercourse of nations is now regulated, would show the advance which civilization has made in this respect since the Reformation. In modern public law, some apology for the seizure of territories, occupied by barbarians, is deemed necessary, beyond the grants of the Pope, or the natural rights of Christians to the ownership of the whole earth. There were certain rules by which European nations agreed to divide the American continent among themselves, and these are still referred to among diplomatists in discussing questions of boundary and the like. But the validity of the original title is no longer allowed to be drawn into discussion. It is sufficient to say that all America is held under titles derived from the governments of Europe. And all questions of title, except as modified by local law, are decided according to the rules and principles of the European country to whose original sovereignty all rights of individual ownership refer. It is impossible, therefore, to suppress this fact, in any faithful investigation of our relations to Europe.
But in addition to this, we must remember that every civilized community on this continent was originally constituted by