National law is a body of legal rules that governs a nation. These rules are practiced by the courts and legal profession. Unlike international “laws,” which are merely treaties, national law is enforceable by governmental bodies. It can be applied to a variety of situations. In addition to determining legal rights, national law is also a basis for lawmaking.
National law is often associated with foreign countries, although there is a connection between national laws and international relations. For instance, Ancient Greece developed basic notions of international relations and governance, and many of the earliest peace treaties were signed among city-states and neighboring states. Similarly, the Roman Empire established a conceptual framework for international law. The Roman law of nations governed the status of foreigners in Rome and the relationships between their citizens and those of the Roman empire. This law came to be known as jus gentium, and was later incorporated into the Roman Code as a universal law. Its goal was to ensure that foreign individuals were treated equally by the law of the land in which they resided.
Another important source of national law is the World Constitutions Illustrated database, which includes the current constitutions of almost every nation in the world. In addition, it contains English translations of the constitutions of many jurisdictions, as well as historical constitutions. The database also includes links to scholarly commentary on each constitution. This includes journal articles and e-books.