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International Law Research: General Principles of Law

General Principles of Law

Along with international conventions and customary law, Article 38 of the ICJ Statute recognizes  "the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations," as major sources of international law. 

Examples of general principles of law include: 

–Pacta sunt servanda; res judicata; good faith; special over general; latter over former; the maxim that “equity will not suffer a wrong to be without a remedy;” etc.


Cheng, Bin. General Principles of Law, As Applied by International Courts and Tribunals. Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2006..

Raimondo, Fabián. General Principles of Law in the Decisions of International Criminal Courts and Tribunals. Leiden: M. Nijhoff Pub, 2008. 

Del Vecchio, Giorgio. General Principles of Law. Boston : Boston University Press, c1956.