Sacramentum Mundi Online

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Rights of Man
(2,079 words)

1. Concept and historical background. The rights of man are understood as the universal, inviolable and inalienable rights which are due to him as a rational being endowed with free will. They are his “by nature”, since he is a person. They safeguard the dignity of man against State and society, and were first expressly formulated in this sense in the “Virginia Bill of Rights”, 12 June 1776, and the American Declaration of Independence, 4 July 1776. By way of the “Déclaration des droits de l’homme et du citoyen” of the French National…

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José Maria Diez-Alegría, “Rights of Man”, in: Sacramentum Mundi Online, General Editor Karl Rahner, SJ. Consulted online on 25 September 2023 <>
First published online: 2016

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