The diplomatic corps is one of the most obvious manifestations of the international society of states. Nevertheless, the body of diplomats which constitutes it in every capital city and home of international organizations has been almost completely neglected by contemporary international scholarship. This volume challenges the conventional view that the diplomatic corps is a leftover from the ceremony and privilege of a bygone era of "old diplomacy." Its essays trace the historical development of the diplomatic corps. They demonstrate its importance in setting the terms on which everyday international life continues to be undertaken and the way the corps has adapted to a world in which states are increasingly only one among many actors which require diplomatic representation.