Louis Renault was born May 21 of 1843 in Autun, France. His father was a Burgundian bookseller and bibliographer, offering his son exposure to and a love for books. Renault graduated high school and went on to the Collège d'Autun. There he took prizes for math, literature, and philosophy. From there he went to the University of Dijon and earned a bachelor’s in literature.
After that, his pursuit of higher education continued for another seven years, culminating in 1868 with three law degrees, including a doctorate, and receiving high honors in all of them. With his final graduation, he took a job as a Roman lecturer and a professor of commercial law. In 1873, he began teaching law at the University of Paris.
In 1874, he made another move when he was asked to fill in, teaching international law. It was the beginning of his true career, as he committed himself to the field of international law wholeheartedly, publishing a book and over 200 notes and articles in political science journals, law reviews and other publications. He received the position of chair of international law, in 1881.
Filling positions at the University of Paris and two military schools, he supervised 252 doctoral theses, inspiring many students who later went on to serve important positions in France and other nations. Becoming ever more involved in political affairs, Renault participated in conferences on everything from obscene literature to military aviation. He helped revise the Red Cross Convention of 1864 and argued for the abolition of white slavery.
He received the title of Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary in 1903. His involvement only became more intense from that point on as he was placed on the panel of 28 arbitrators for the Hague Tribunal, a tribunal assigned to solving cases of international arbitration. He served in six major cases including the Japanese House Tax case
involving Japan, Great Britain, Germany, and France, and the Canevaro case
between Peru and Italy.
Renault was the reporter for the Second Commission at the initial Hague Peace Conference
in 1899. He helped resolve issues on naval warfare and was the primary writer of the Final Act, the conference summary. For the second Hague Peace Conference, he handled many other important resolutions such as defining rights for neutral nations during naval war. For his services to so many countries, Renault was awarded many honors including being named to the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences in France and to the Legion of Honor. Renault won the nobel peace prize in 1907. He was decorated by 19 nations outside of his native France and became the President of the Academy of International Law in 1914.Read More