1901 – the Swiss Jean-Henri Dunant (1828-1910) and the Frenchman Frédéric Passy (1822-1912)

Jean-Henri Dunant – the founder of the International Committee of the Red Cross (1863). He came upon the idea of establishing the ICRC when he saw the aftermath of the battle of Solferino in Italy.

In 1866, he wrote a brochure called the “Universal and International Society for the Revival of the Orient”, in which he presented his plans to create a neutral colony in Palestine.

He initiated the conclusion of the Geneva Convention. He was born to a wealthy family and yet died in poverty. After 1895, the world heaped prizes and awards upon him. He did not spend any of the prize monies he had received. Instead, he bequeathed some legacies to those who had cared for him in the hospital and endowed a “free bed” for the poorest patients. He donated the remainder to charity in Norway and Switzerland.

Frédéric Passy (1822-1912), a French lawyer, founder and President of the first French Peace Society, called Société française pour l’arbitrage entre nations (French Society for Arbitration between Nations) since 1889. These societies can be regarded as precursors to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague and the League of Nations. Passy was called an “apostle of peace”. He wrote unceasingly and vividly. Moreover, Passy was a renowned speaker with a powerful voice and ample gestures. Nevertheless, he made intellectual demands on his audience.

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