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Full-Text Articles in Legal History

A Government Of Laws Not Of Precedents 1776-1876: The Google Challenge To Common Law Myth, James Maxeiner Jan 2015

A Government Of Laws Not Of Precedents 1776-1876: The Google Challenge To Common Law Myth, James Maxeiner

James R Maxeiner

Conventional wisdom holds that the United States is a common law country of precedents where, until the 20th century (the “Age of Statutes”), statutes had little role. Digitization by Google and others of previously hard to find legal works of the 19th century challenges this common law myth. At the Centennial in 1876 Americans celebrated that “The great fact in the progress of American jurisprudence … is its tendency towards organic statute law and towards the systematizing of law; in other words, towards written constitutions and codification.” This article tests the claim of the Centennial Writers of 1876 and finds it ...


Holmes And The Common Law: A Jury's Duty, Matthew P. Cline Mar 2013

Holmes And The Common Law: A Jury's Duty, Matthew P. Cline

Matthew P Cline

The notion of a small group of peers whose responsibility it is to play a part in determining the outcome of a trial is central to the common conception of the American legal system. Memorialized in the Constitution of the United States as a fundamental right, and in the national consciousness as the proud, if begrudged, duty of all citizens, juries are often discussed, but perhaps not always understood. Whatever misunderstandings have come to be, certainly many of them sprang from the juxtaposition of jury and judge. Why do we have both? How are their responsibilities divided? Who truly decides ...


Beyond Mitigation: Towards A Theory Of Allocution, Kimberly A. Thomas Jan 2007

Beyond Mitigation: Towards A Theory Of Allocution, Kimberly A. Thomas

Articles

THE COURT: I don't think I have time to listen .... I am not going to reexamine your guilt or innocence here. That is not the purpose of a sentence.. THE DEFENDANT: I did not have the chance to tell you .... THE DEFENDANT: But, your Honor, listen to me-1 Should the court hear this defendant? Is the story of innocence relevant at allocution-the defendant's opportunity to speak on his or her own behalf at the sentencing hearing prior to the imposition of sentence? Or, is the purpose of allocution something different, as the judge suggests? The answers depend on ...


Some Lessons From The Civil Law, Edwin Borchard Jan 1916

Some Lessons From The Civil Law, Edwin Borchard

Faculty Scholarship Series

The purpose of this brief article is not so much to set forth any specific institutions disclosed by a study of the civil law, as to point out some of those defects of our own system which are accentuated by comparison with the civil law, defects due to the methods rather than the substance of the common law. There is no desire to urge such a radical and perhaps impossible step as the substitution of civil law methods for our own; but in the consideration of plans for the improvement of our law, it may be profitable to observe that ...