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A Facsimile of the First Edition of 1765 - 1769, with an introduction by A.W. Brian Simpson
Sir William Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England (1765-69) 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 second volume, Of the Rights of Things A.W. Simpson discusses the history of Blackstone's theory of various aspects of property rights-real property, feudalism, estates, titles, personal property and contracrs - and the work of his predecessors.