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Thomas Aquinas in Terms of Ancient Common Law

Thomas Aquinas would not have been exposed to English common law. The way that it originated is that it was the product of the conglomeration of many customs from various manors that were ruled by lords. There were also pockets of local customs/traditions that survived the "reception" of the common law, much the same as aboriginal rights today, and these customs were respected. It is not overly relevant how common law originated. We should more examine how Aquinas would have seen the aboriginal customary laws and the common law principles in terms of natural law principles. We can gloss over the fact that neither type of law is of the type that Aquinas envisioned as being created by individuals who were ordained by God.

Ronald Dworkin at the Brooklyn Book Festival