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Thomas Hobbes was a 17th century philosopher and political reformist, who was much concerned with the question what made it legitimate, or acceptable, for one person to exercise political power over another. He believed that, left to their own devices, people would live in an anarchic, State of nature, in which every individual would have to fight for his own needs. In such a society, the lives of men would be solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. Given this state of affairs, he reasoned, men would willingly submit to the authority of a sovereign. Thus, political power was legitimate to the extent that it was exercised as a bargain between the governor and the governed. This became known as the Social contract theory of jurisprudence.

Theory of Law