The Current Issue of Law and Contemporary Problems contains an article on Historical Imagery, Legitimation and Lex Mercatoria. An interesting read.
NIKITAS E. HATZIMIHAIL, THE MANY LIVES—AND FACES—OF LEX MERCATORIA: HISTORY AS GENEALOGY IN INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS LAW
This article illustrates twin points. First, far from being an extrinsic display of erudition, historical imagery about the ancient law merchant is employed to legitimate modern notions as to what the governance of international business transactions should be. Second, such historical imagery is almost as diverse as the divergent conceptions and agendas within the mercatorist coalition. A close examination of mercatorist historical narratives will allow us to scrutinize the efforts at legitimation and to better understand the normative agenda and the structure of arguments employed in the lex mercatoria discourse.
[This article (and my previous readings on the subject) makes me wonder if there was a "lex mercatoria" in India in the ancient and the medieval times. India, as we have read in history, was famous for sea trade with many nations in the ancient as well as medieval times. Can anybody throw light on this aspect?]