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BSTRACT. Rights are many and diverse. They are jural rather than material entities that subsist in a society of rational beings and relate essentially to property, in the limiting case, one’s property in oneself. Law is the product of social evolution and exists to vindicate rights. The conditions for the emergence of law are embodiment, scarcity, rationality and sociability. The context for the emergence of law is dispute resolution. The characteristics of such a customarily evolved law are its severely limited scope, its negativity, and its horizontality. A legal system (or systems) based on the principles of customarily evolved law could answer the needs of social order, namely, the vindication of rights, without permitting the paternalistic interferences with liberty characteristic of contemporary legal systems. pp. 9–18

Keywords: rights, law, language, custom, legal system

GERARD CASEY
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University College Dublin

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