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Professors of the Law: Barristers and English Legal Culture in the Eighteenth Century


ISBN13: 9780198207214
ISBN: 0198207212
Published: November 2000
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £137.50



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What happened to the culture of common law and English barristers in the 18th century? In this 'sequel' to Gentlemen and Barristers: The Inns of Court and the English Bar, 1680-1730, David Lemmings anatomizes the barristers and their world and also explores the popular reputation and self-image of the law and lawyers in the context of declining popular participation in litigation, increased parliamentary legislation, and the growth of the imperial state.<

The author shows how the bar survived and prospered in a century of low recruitment and declining work, but failed to fulfil the expectations of an age of Enlightenment and Reform. By contrast with the important role played by the common law, and lawyers, in 17th-century England and in colonial America, it appears that the culture and services of the barristers became marginalized as the courts concentrated on elite clients, and parliament became the primary point of contact between government and population.

Subjects:
Legal History
Contents:
I. INTRODUCTION: TWO STORIES OF THE LAW; Historians, the Law, and Eighteenth-Century Society; Another Story of the Law: the Reputation of Lawyers and the Courts; II. THE WORK OF THE BAR AND WORKING LIFE; Advocacy and Pleading: The Shape of Barristers Work; Counselling and Conveying; Everyday Life; III. BARRISTERS AND PRACTISERS: NUMBERS AND PROSPECTS; Barristers and Non Practisers; Practisers: Supply and Demand; The Characteristics of Litigation: A Crisis in Westminster Hall?; Prospects for Barristers: Keeping Life Going; IV. GENTLEMEN BRED TO THE LAW: INDUCTION AND LEGAL EDUCATION; Motives and Qualifications: Hopes and Dreams; The Failure of Institutions: Education at the Universities and the Inns; A Dry and Disgusting Study: Learning the Law; A Cultural Challenge?; V. PRACTICE AT THE CENTRE: WESTMINSTER HALL AND ITS SATELLITES; Starting Out: Launching A Practice; Winners and Losers: The Distribution of Work in Westminster Hall; Getting On: Practices, Fees, and Incomes; VI. PRACTICE AT THE MARGINS: THE OLD BAILEY AND THE COLONIES; Tribunes of the People: The Old Bailey Bar Law, Lawyers, and; Ireland and America: Colonial Bars and Barristers; Law, Lawyers, and 1776: Contrasting American Attorneys and English Barristers; VII. ADVANCEMENT AND INDEPENDENCE; Rank and Status at the Inns of Court: Internal Promotion; Patronage, Politics, and Office: External Promotion; Serving the State? The Independence of Bar and Bench; VIII. CONCLUSION: THE CULTURE OF THE BAR AND THE RECESSION OF THE COMMON LAW; Collective Life and Rituals 24. Self-Images: Collective Self-Esteem and Legitimating Concepts; Self-Images: Collective Self-Esteem and Legitimating Concepts; Consequences? : The Failure of the Bar and Recession of the Common Law; Appendix A: Methodology and Biographical Notes for Barrister Samples, 1719-21 and 1769-71; Appendix B: A Prescription for Educating a Barrister, 1736; Appendix C: Leading Counsel In Kings Bench, Exchequer, Common Pleas, and Chancery, 1720, 1740, 1770, 1790; Appendix D: A Junior Barrister's Complaints about the Selection and Advantage of King's Counsel, 1750