Honor’s mechanism of The Spirit of the Laws as a sign of a notable discontinuity in the President’s thought. A new explanation for the incompleteness of the Traité des devoirs

Federico Bonzi


This article regards the relation between the principle of Monarchy, the Honor (The Spirit of Laws, III, 7) and the project of Traité des devoirs.
In the first part of this paper, I will consider some Works – in particular the Discours sur Cicéron and the Éloge de la sincérité – and the importance of the meditation on Cicero in the period 1715-1725, in order to understand how Montesquieu didn’t finish the Traité des devoirs.
In the second part, the genetic approach adopted throughout this paper can allow to show a notable change in the elaboration of the President’s thought that concerns his whole work, from the works he wrote when he was at the Academy of Bordeaux until The Spirit of the Laws, where honour emerges for the first time.


Montesquieu; Cicero; Stoicism; Honor; Traité des devoirs; The Spirit of Laws

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DOI: 10.6092/issn.2421-4124/6426


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