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20-Mar-2019 17:44

Plato nevertheless hoped that the best men would be good at respecting established laws, explaining that "Where the law is subject to some other authority and has none of its own, the collapse of the state, in my view, is not far off; but if law is the master of the government and the government is its slave, then the situation is full of promise and men enjoy all the blessings that the gods shower on a state." It is more proper that law should govern than any one of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place the supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servants of the laws.During the Roman Republic, controversial magistrates might be put on trial when their terms of office expired.Rule of law implies that every citizen is subject to the law.It stands in contrast to the idea that the ruler is above the law, for example by divine right.Under the Roman Empire, the sovereign was personally immune (legibus solutus), but those with grievances could sue the treasury.

Others, including a few legal theorists, believe that the rule of law necessarily entails protection of individual rights.Mosaic representing both the judicial and legislative aspects of law.The woman on the throne holds a sword to chastise the guilty and a palm branch to reward the meritorious.In 1776, the notion that no one is above the law was popular during the founding of the United States.

For example, Thomas Paine wrote in his pamphlet Common Sense that "in America, the law is king.

James Harrington wrote in Oceana (1656), drawing principally on Aristotle’s Politics, that among forms of government an “Empire of Laws, and not of Men” was preferable to an “Empire of Men, and not of Laws”.