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ed and preserved by the integrity of our conduct. Distributive justice is that by which the differences of mankind are decided according to the rules of equity: the former is the justice of private individuals; the latter, of princes and magistrates.'
Chancellor Egerton one morning, coming down stairs to go to Westminister Hall, observed these words written upon the wall before him: “Tanquam non reversurus," as if never to return, intimating how impartial he ought to be, supposed to have been written there by some person who had that day an important cause to be tried, and feared oppression.
Sir Thomas More, when Lord Chancellor of England, was remarkable for his justice, and attention to the duties of his station. It is said that the meanest claimant found ready access to him: no private affection could bias his judgment or influence his decree; no opportunity was given for intrigue or interested solicitation; and, after he had presided in the court of chancery for two years, such was his application to business, that one day, calling for the next cause, he was told there was not another then depending. A circumstance which he immediately ordered to be set down on record; and we suppose it will be allowed an unique of the kind.
Lord Bacon, in his essays modern and civil, gives the following anecdote of Sir Thomas. A person who had a suit in chancery sent him two silver flagons, not doubting of the agreeableness of the present. On receiving them, - he called one of his servants, and ordered him to fill those two vessels with the best wine in his cellar; and, turning round to the servant who had presented them, “Tell your master,” said the inflexible magistrate, “that, if he approve my wine, I beg he would not spare it; and returned the cups.
Lord Chief Justice Holt was one of the ablest and most upright Judges that ever presided in a court of justice. Such was the integrity and firmness of his mind, that he could never be brought to swerve in the least from what he esteemed law and justice. He was remarkably strenuous in nobly asserting, and as rigorously supporting, the liberties of the subject, to which he paid the greatest regard; and would not even suffer a reflection, tending to depreciate them, to pass uncensured, or without a severe reprimand. He lost his place, as recorder of London, for refusing to expound the law suitably to the king's designs. He asserted the law with such intrepidity, that he incurred, by turns, the indignation of both houses of parliament.
It is said of Mr. Jonas Hanway, that, in his department of commissioner for victualling the navy, he was uncommonly assiduous and attentive, and kept the contractors and persons who had dealings with the office at a great distance. He would not even accept of a hare or pheasant, or the smallest present, from any of them ; and when any were sent him, he always returned them; not in a morose manner, as if he affected the excess of disinterestedness, but with some mild answer; such as, “Mr. Hanway returns many thanks to Mr. for the present he intended him, but he has made it a rule not to accept
any thing from any person engaged with the à office. A rule which he hopes Mr. -
good intentions will not expect him to break through.”
It is recorded of Sir Matthew Hale, that, whenever he was convinced of the injustice of any cause, he would engage no farther in it than to explain to his client the grounds of that conviction. He abhorred the practice of misreciting evidences; quoting precedents or books falsely or unfairly, so as to deceive ignorant juries or inattentive judges; and that he adhered to the same scrupulous sincerity in his pleadings which he observed in the other transactions of his life. For he used to say, “it was as great a dishonour as a man was capable of, that, for a little money, he was to be hired to say or do otherwise than he thought.”
This brings to mind the saying of Epaminondas, who, when great presents were sent to him, used to observe, “If the thing you desire be good, I will do it without any bribe, even because it is good: if it be not honest, I will not do it for all the goods in the world.”.
When he was once going his circuit, he understood that the protector had ordered a jury to be returned for a trial in which he was more than ordinarily concerned. Upon this information, he examined the sheriff about it, who knew nothing of it, for he said that he referred all such things to the under sheriff; and, having next asked the under sheriff concerning it, he found the jury had been returned by order from Cromwell : upon which he shewed the statute, that all juries ought to be returned by the sheriff or his lawful officer; and this not being done according to law, he dismissed the jury, and would not try the cause. Upon which the Protector was highly displeased with him, and,
at his return from the circuit, he told him, in anger, 6. That he was not fit to be a judge.” To which all the answer he made was, “ That it was very true.”
Colonel Tatham, who practised law while in the Tenessee government, published, among others, the following rules :
" Fiat Fustitia! “ Having adopted the above motto as early as I had the honour of admission to the bar, I have covenanted with myself that I will never knowingly depart from it; and on this foundation I have built a few maxims, which afford
reflections an unspeakable satisfaction.
“ 1st. I will practice law, because it offers me opportunities of being a more useful member of society,
2dly. I will not turn a deaf ear to any man because his purse is empty.
3dly. I will advise no man beyond my comprehension of his cause.
“ 4thly. I will bring none into law who my conscience tells me should be kept out of it.
5thly. I will never be unmindful of the cause of humanity; and this comprehends the fatherless, widows, and bondages.
“ 6thly. I will be faithful to my client, but ne. ver so unfaithful to myself as to become a party in his crime.
- 7thly. I will never acknowledge the omnipotence of legislation, or consider any acts to be law beyond the spirit of the constitution.
“ Sthly. No man's greatness shall elevate him above the justice due to my client.
9thly. I will not consent to a compromise VOL. III.
where I conceive a verdict essential to my client's future reputation or protection ; for of this he cannot be a complete judge.
10thly. I will advise the turbulent with can. dour; and, if they will go to law against my advice, they must pardon me for volunteering it against them.
“ 11thly. I will acknowledge every man's right to manage his own cause if he pleases.
“ The above are my rules of practice ; and though I will not, at this critical juncture, promise to finish my business in person, but, if the public interest should require my removal from hence, will do every thing in my power for those who like to employ me, and endeavour to leave them in proper hands if I should be absent. (Signed)
« WILLIAM TATHAM. “ Knoxville, March 21, 1793."
THE INFLEXIBLE JURYMEN. In the trial of the famous William Pen and William Mead, at the Old Bailey, for an unlawful assembly in the open street, in contempt of the king's laws, &c. we find a striking instance of the inflexible justice of the jury. After the jury had withdrawn an hour and a half, the prisoners were brought to the bar to hear their verdict: eight of them came down agreed, but four remained above, to whom they used many unworthy threats, and in particular to Mr. Bushel, whom they charged with being the cause of the disagreement. At length, after withdrawing a second time, they agreed to bring them in guilty of speaking in Gracechurch-s.reet, which the court would not accept