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Commentaries on the Laws of England, Volume 3

A Facsimile of the First Edition of 1765-1769

Sir William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England (1765-1769) stands as the first great effort to reduce the English common law to a unified and rational system. Blackstone demonstrated that the English law as a system of justice was comparable to Roman law and the civil law of the Continent. Clearly and elegantly written, the work achieved immediate renown and exerted a powerful influence on legal education in England and in America which was to last into the late nineteenth century. The book is regarded not only as a legal classic but as a literary masterpiece.

Previously available only in an expensive hardcover set, Commentaries on the Laws of England is published here in four separate volumes, each one affordably priced in a paperback edition. These works are facsimiles of the eighteenth-century first edition and are undistorted by later interpolations. Each volume deals with a particular field of law and carries with it an introduction by a leading contemporary scholar.

Introducing this third volume, Of Private Wrongs, John H. Langbein discusses Blackstone’s account of procedure and jurisdiction, jury trial, and equity. He also examines Blackstone’s uneasy attitude toward the celebrated legal frictions of English civil procedure.

476 pages | xxviii | 5.90 x 8.90 | © 1979

Law and Legal Studies: Legal History

Table of Contents

Book III - Of Private Wrongs
1. Of the Redress of Private Wrongs by the mere act of the Parties
2. Of Redress by the mere operation of Law
3. Of Courts in general
4. Of the Public Courts of Common Law and Equity
5. Of Courts Ecclesiastical, Military, and Maritime
6. Of Courts of a Special Jurisdiction
7. Of the Cognizance of Private Wrongs
8. Of Wrongs, and their Remedies, respecting the Rights of Persons
9. Of Injuries to Personal Property
10. Of Injuries to Real Property, and first of Dispossession, or Ouster, of the Freehold
11. Of Dispossession, or Ouster, of Chattels Real
12. Of Trespass
13. Of Nusance
14. Of Waste
15. Of Subtraction
16. Of Disturbance
17. Of Injuries proceeding from, or affecting, the Crown
18. Of the Pursuit of Remedies by Action; and, first, of the Original Writ
19. Of Process
20. Of Pleading
21. Of Issue and Demurrer
22. Of the Several Species of Trial
23. Of the Trial by Jury
24. Of Judgment, and it’s Incidents
25. Of Proceedings, in the nature of Appeals
26. Of Execution
27. Of Proceedings in the Courts of Equity

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