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An Essay On The Trial By Jury by Lysander…
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An Essay On The Trial By Jury (1852)

by Lysander Spooner

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Spooner was an American anarchist, and in this essay he pursues one element or anchor of liberty in all its features. He presents a thousand years of history to demonstrate his conclusions regarding the rights of men against government and how those rights are protected by jury trials. He examines history and legal publications, quoted in massive footnotes, to back up his conclusions about juries. From those sources he inspects the oaths of judges, jurors, and English kings. He has some comments and notes to show how the rights and protections provided by juries are being eroded in his time (1852).

His conclusions are that juries can serve as a bulwark of liberty, but must have the authority to judge the law itself, the proceeding, and the case before it. Further, he holds that without all those powers, the U.S. constitutional guarantee of ‘trial by jury’ is meaningless. This is not light reading due to the depth and extent of his demonstrations, but that very detail makes this work a major source for students of jurisprudence, liberty, and their interaction. ( )
  ServusLibri | Feb 13, 2009 |
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"An essay discussing what Common Law trial by jury is" --Provided by publisher.

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