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COMITY OF NATIONS Definition & Legal Meaning

Law dictionary entry - legal definition of embargo

Definition & Citations:

The most appropriate phrase to express the true foundation and extent of the obligation of the laws of one nation within the territories of another. It is derived altogether from the voluntary consent of the latter; and it is inadmissible when it is contrary to its known policy, or prejudicial to its interests. In the silence of any positive rule affirming or denying or restraining the operation of foreign laws, courts of justice presume the tacit adoption of them by their own government, unless repugnant to its policy, or prejudicial to its interests. It is not the comity of the courts, but the comity of the nation, which is administered and ascertained in the same way, and guided by the same reasoning, by which all other principles of the municipal law are ascertained and guided. Story, Confl. Laws, $ 38. The comity of nations (comitas gentium) is that body of rules which states observe towards one another from courtesy or mutual convenience, although they do not form part of international law. Holtz. Enc. I. v. Hilton v. Guyot, 159 U. S. 113, 16 Sup. Ct. 139, 40 L. Ed. 95; Fisher v. Fielding, 67 Conn. 91, 34 Atl. 714, 32 L. R. A. 236, 52 Am. St. Rep. 270; People v. Martin, 175 N. Y. 315, 67 N. E. 589, 96 Am. St Rep. 628


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