Emer (Emerich or Emmerich) de Vattel (1714-1767) was a Swiss philosopher, diplomat, and legal expert whose theories laid the foundation of modern international law and political philosophy. He was largely influenced in his philosophy by Gottfried Leibniz and Christian Wolff and strove to integrate their ideas into the legal and political system. His writings were widely read in the American colonies and had a profound impact on the thinking of the framers of the American constitution.
Emer de Vattel is most famous for his 1758 work Droit des gens; ou, Principes de la loi naturelle appliqués à la conduite et aux affaires des nations et des souverains (in English, The Law of Nations or the Principles of Natural Law Applied to the Conduct and to the Affairs of Nations and of Sovereigns). This work was his claim to fame and won him enough prestige to be appointed as a councilor to the court of King Augustus III of Saxony.