Ioannis Seldeni Mare clausum seu De dominio maris libri duo.

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Dublin Core


Ioannis Seldeni Mare clausum seu De dominio maris libri duo.
Primo, Mare, ex iure nature seu gentium, omnium hominum non esse commune, sed dominii privati seu proprietatis capax, pariter ac tellurem, esse demonstratur. Secundo, serenissimum Magne Britanniae Regem maris circumflui, ut individuae atque perpetuae Imperii Britannici appendicis, dominum, esse, asseritur.


This work was written in response to Mare Liberum or Free Sea (1609) by Hugo Grotius (1583-1645). Grotius had argued for freedom of access to the seas; Selden's rebuttal, Mare Clausum or Closed Sea, argued that the sea around the coastline of a country should be solely the dominion of the country in question.


17th century black goatskin binding. Gilt tooling to covers, with the Royal Arms as a gilt-stamped centrepiece. This stamp matches Charles I, King of England, Scotland and Ireland (1600 - 1649), Stamp 15a in the British Armorial Bindings database, the source for which is a copy of Mare clausum in the British Library (Foot, The Henry Davis Gift, no. 183). The book is dedicated to Charles I and this is likely to have been one of the copies he is known to have ordered to be bound for official use. With further gilt tooling to board edges and turn-ins. Bookblock edges in gilt. 2 brass clasps, the upper clasps largely missing. Mid-17th century endpapers with watermark of pot/jug, with one handle on left side, decorated lid, and quatrefoil and crescent on top.


John Selden (1584-1654)



London: William Stansby (active 1597-1638)




ESTC, S117048


Folio (29 cm)




John Selden (1584-1654), “Ioannis Seldeni Mare clausum seu De dominio maris libri duo.,” The Hornby Bindings, accessed December 3, 2022,