Prolific as a scholar, active in the League of Nations, and agent for Greece before the Permanent Court, Nicolas Politis is remembered today as a key figure both in the development of international legal doctrine and in the organization of international political relations. This short article examines three of Politis' texts - the first an early foray into scholarship dealing with issues arising from the 1897 Greek-Turkish War, the second a set of mid-career lectures at the Hague Academy of International Law, and the third the posthumously published La morale internationale, a work of considerable ambition that never quite managed to find its audience. The article's chief aim is to demonstrate that Politis' trajectory was marked by recurring appeals to extra-legal ideas and arguments - a broadly antiformalistic tendency which made its influence felt with increasing visibility over time, but which was present even in his earliest and most conventional work.