I dont have time to revise this right now, but this article is so completely, totally and tragically wrong it's not funny. This is nineteenth century scholarship at it's absolute worst.
This sort of article is why written works need named authors, so readers can identify their future work, and apply appropriate weight to it.
Tobin, your work just made my 'Ignore as crap unless it's really well footnoted with authorities I trust' list.
To summarise ;
If there is one golden thread that runs through medieval political thought and practice, it is the idea of lawfullness.
It is not sufficent to merely conquer some province ; you have to have a lawful claim to it. For example - William of Normandy invaded England in defence of a lawful claim to the throne, and the English campaigns in France had a legal basis other than 'They wanted our land, and the took it'.
It could be a pretty crappy claim, but the claim needs to be there.
Now, in Quattracentro and later Italy, these rules did not apply, as by this point Italy was not a medieval society ; it was in the Modern, where States are soveriegn, amoral and co-equal.
Switch the sense-o-humour meter back on dude and check the article history. This was written by me as a placeholder article to remind me to come back and fill in the bits of it later. It's not 19th C scholarship, it's not any kind of scholarship.
More to the point, it's a big hole that gets filled in later with links to lots of articles about politics in the middle ages, politics in the renaissance, politics in 14th C germany, politics in 11th C Russia, etc. Plus one big one about my mate Niccollo. You aren't going to be able to write one article (or book, or theorem) that covers all of the possible angles of politics throughout the 1000 years or so that we refer loosely to as "period". You need to have sub-articles or it ain't gonna cut the mustard. For example:
It is not sufficent to merely conquer some province ; you have to have a lawful claim to it.
This is true for 90% of history, I don't believe it's true for the early gothic migrations, and I don't believe it was ever a major tenet of the early vikings (you raided some province because it had gold, you conquered land because you needed it). It may have been an established principle by the 10th C, it wasn't an established one in the 5th.
Start with the broad generalisations, even wrong ones (they are all wrong anyway). Chuck in some links. Fill in the links.