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raging an example? I am fully sen applied lo such studies as could alone sible, that the portrait of Mr. REEVES enable them to wear it with credit ; ought to be delineated by a můch more that is to say, they were first called masterly pencil. A ROBERTSON or a to the bar, and afterwards betbought Home would bave found such a subject tbemselves of the qualifications necesworthy their genius. But though I can sary to make a figure ibere. Mr. not paint his virtues with all the glow. Reeves is a striking exception to the ing tints of eloquence, I can shew them general justuess and severity of this in a less suspected light, the genuine remark. He did not appear in the lustre of truth. I am animated, there professional robe till be bad given proofs fore, in the attempt by the strongest of his professional knowledge. About conviction, that the best method of the year previous to his introduction praising him is to describe bis actions at Westminster Hall, he publisbed a with fidelity.
Chart of Penal Law, and a small Tract
on the Nature of Estates; both of MR. REEVES was born about the which pieces obtained, what they ceryear 1752, and received his education tainly deserved, a considerable share of on the foundation at Eton; but failing approbation. When, therefore, be soliio his expectation of succeeding to cited, according to form, the rank and King's College, Cambridge, he entered privileges of a Barrister, the benchers himself of Merton College, Oxford, who granted his request might very prowhere he took the degree of Batchelor perly say to bim, in the words of the old of Arts. From thence he was elected to Roman, a scholarship at Queen's, became a Fel. Sume superbiam quæritam meritis: low there, and took the degree of Master of Arts May 21, 1778.
Assume the honours due to just desert In writing the memoirs of great and Mr. Reeves was called to the bar in good men, all the trilling incidents of the year 1780, and no doubt was then their youth are usually sought after with entertained of his proviog one of its laborious research, and are supposed to most distinguished ornaments. But be derive importance froin the higher scepos soon found, the wrangle of altercation to which they serve as a prelude. Such very little suited either to the natural anecdotes may indeed amuse idle curio. turn of his temper, or to the calm and sity, but they more frequently, incite voruffled dignity of his mind. Enimpatience and disgust in readers of dowed with the happiest talents for inanother class, whose sole wish is to vestigating truth, and for displayiog it be ipade acquainted with the history with force and evidence, tre felt an un: of accomplished manhood. Few facis conquerable antipathy to the indiscrideserving of record are to be found minate defence of right and wrong. during minority in the lives of the most After exerting bimself, therefore, with illustrious characters; and with respectability and success, upon several signal to Mr. Reeves, it would be particu- occasions, he gradually withdrew from larly unpardonable to divert the atten. a scene where the fire of genius is not tion of the public from the signal events always kindled by the love of justice, of his riper years, by ang detail, bowever but by the spirit of venality, by the entertaining, of bis juvenile occurrouces. ardour of reveuge, by the clash or colliThe only remark on the early part of bis sion of contending interests. life, which can with propriely be intro But in discontinuing his attendance duced here, is, that in the course of his at Westminster-hall, Mr. Reeves did oot acadeinical pursuits at Elon, and at Ox- forget the duties of his profession, nor ford, he impressed upon the miods of all the services wbich every man of science who knew bim a very bigb opinion of owes to the great body of society. He both his heart and bis bead :-an opi. did not sink into the lap of indolence : piou wbich the uniforin tenor of his he did not suffer his faculties to be tarconduct since has fully justified and nished or impaired by the rust of inconfirmed.
action. His retirement from the sphere It was an observation often made by of business was quickly productive of the late Judge BLACKSTONE, and which more valuable fruits than the unceasing he always expressed with great concern, bustle of many who continued in the that too many of the Members of our field. He published in 1783, the first Inns of Court kept regular terms, and volume, in 41o. of his HisTORY OF THE pial or the on before they seriously ENGLISH Law, ending with the wise
establishments of Edward the First ; unprejudiced, and peruse it with the and in the course of the next year, the same atlention that is bestowed on a second volume appeared, continuing the system of modern law. Tbe law of parrative to the close of HENRY the the time would then be learned in the Seventh's reigu.
language of the tiine, unadulterated Several trealises had before been with new opinions; and when that was written to elucidate different parts of clearly understood, the alterations made. so interesting a subject ; but Mr. thereio in subsequent periods might be Reeves's discussion of it was perfectly deduced, and exbibited to the mind of a dew, accurate, and satisfactory. He modero reader in as simple and intellidid not carry his readers back into the gible a form as they were to persons dark mist of Saxon antiquities; nor did who lived in those periods. Furtber, if he vainly endeavour to fill up the chasnis our statutes, and the interpretations of of authentic record by ingenious, but them, with the changes that have hapa useless, conjectures. He saw the exact pened in the maxims, rules, and doce point of departure whence the can- trines of the law, were related in the did historian should set out, and con- order in which they severally took tented bimself with giving a sketch place, such a history, from the begin. of the system of jurisprudence that subo ning of our oldest memorials down to sisted at a more distant period. The the present time, would convey to the clearest opinion, as be justly observed, reader a tolerably just and complete that could be formed respecting such account of our whole law, as it stands at obscure times, was not worth defend this day, with Ibat advantage which an ing with much obstinacy: and he might arrangement, conformable to the nature have added, that notwithstanding all of the subject, enjoys over one that the labour and the learning that have is merely artificiai.” It is impossible to been idly wasted ju dissertations on the speak of his plan with greater modesty Joanners and the customs of the Saxons, and truth. on the nature of their tenures, and the But if the design was well formed, coustitution of their legislative assem. the execution was not less masteriy. blies, the few traces which now remain `All the revolutions in our laws are of those institutions are capable of traced with the ulmost clearness and very little application or inference. He precision. Before any changes in the therefore wisely began his historic de. general system are described, before tails at the time of the Norman 11- any particular acts or statotes are menvasion, when a new order of things tioned, the reader is always supplied arose, when something like a regular with such a degree of previous informas system first took place,--and from tion, as always enables bim lo comprewhich period the writer is frequently bend their import, on a bare statement more incumbered by the multitude, of their contents. The author's style than distressed for want of genuine is manly and perspicuous. Full of iho materials.
importance of his subject, he ever The method pursued by Mr. Reeves, expresses himself with dignity and in arranging and moulding those mate. purity. His language is neither alrials, was equally original and judi- luyed with ancient inelegance, nor set cious. “I found,” says he, in the pre. off by the false graces of modern affecfatory dedication to Lord THURLOW, tation. “ that moderu writers, iu discoursing of The example of prostituted talent, the ancient law, were too apt to speak in a few eminent lawyers, has afforded ja modern ternis, and always with re illiberal criticism some pretence for ference to some' modern usage: hence asserting that the writings of men of it followed, that what they adduced was that profession are rather favourable to strangely distorted and misrepresented, the inluence of the crown than to the with a view of displaying, and account. freedom of the subject. But no part of ing for certain coincidences of the law this obloquy can, with the least shadow at different times. As this produced of truth or justice, be thrown on Mr. very great mistakes, it appeared to me, Reeves. He every where appears á that in order to bave a right conception zealous friend to a well-regulated goof our old jorisprudence, it would be verruinent, and a warm advocate for necessary to forget, for a while, every civil and religious liberty. He points alteration which has been made since, out, with the generous rapture of an 10 enler upon it with a miod wholls Englishman, the sacred barrier that so
cures, on one side, the privileges of of those laborious efforts, Mr. Reores the Crown against the fury of popular cast a frequent glance at what was pas. licentiousness ; and guards, on the sing on the great theatre of life; and other, the rights of the people from the was always ready to take up any new encroachments of arbitrary power. He subject that seemed likely to promote places the origin of the trial by jury, the immediale welfare or tranquillity and its inestimable advantages, in the of his country. The Police Bill which strongest light. He enlarges on the be produced in 1785, evidently shews history of those famous charters, ob- that the short intervals or ternporary tained at different periods, which form relaxation of his iolepse studies were the foundations and key-slones of our always made subservicot to the public grand constitutional arch, -an arch that good. has been compacted and strengthened How painful it is to take even a by the pressure of time, and by the retrospective view of the scenes of out; balleries of its frantic assailants. Even rage and rapine, which prevailed at that at the opening of his work, the dispute time in Westminster, and in the suburbs about the term conquest, as applied to of the metropolis 1 Numerous gangs of the Duke of Normandy, gives him oc. pick pockels, assuming almost the apcasion to introduce the following senti. pearance of regular bandiiti, sallied forth ment, “ that the tyranny of a prince, at the approach of wight, scouring the who lived seven hundred years ago, streets, and levying contributions on the cannot be a precedent for ibe oppres. passengers with impunity. Many of the sions of his successors, nor can any latter, for fear of ill treatment, quietly length of time establish a prescription surrendered their property; others were against the unalienable rights of man. surrounded in dcleoding it; and the ackind.”
cidental spectators of such ailacks, ioti A minuter exposition of the merit midated by the number of the desperaof Mr. Reeves's History would lead docs, instead of interpusing, thought us too far from our present purpose. only of their own escape. Though wost Besides, the nation at large has already of these daring robberies were commit. decided on its excellence; and the warın- ted before the hour of selling the est expressions of private approbation watch : yet, even after that hour, ibe would only be the echo of the public peaceful inhabitant did not enjoy niuch voice. It is enough to add, that the sccurily. It has since been discovered, second edition, in four volumes, octavo, that several housebreakers had the ad. wbich appeared in 1787, extends to the dress to get themselves hired as walch: reign of Philip and Mary; and that the men, and that they not only convived continually increasing demand for it is at, but often assisted, their private com, the best proof, that out only the student panivus in the exccution of their wicked and tbe lawyer, but the statesman and designs. the patriot, look forward with eagerness The prevalence of these disorders na. to the completion of a work, all the pre- tarally excited a general outcry, yet few ceding parts of which contain such a
persons were capable of tracing them to fuud of legal and political knowledge. their various causes, and of prescribing
It migbi be reasonably presumed that proper and effectual remedies. There a work of such maguitude and intri were some fundamental errors in the cacy as the History of the English Law police of Westminster, which tended to might have engrossed any author's defeat all the purposes of its institu, whole time and attention. The col. tion. The high steward, for instance, lection and arrangement of so great bad the appointment of the coustables, a diversity of materials; the removal and was invested with a discretionary of that cumbrous load of diction, that power of punishing them by fine; but immense mass of phraseology, in which he had no authority as a magistrate the spirit of our statules is frequently to manage or to direct them. The buried, and the discovery of a clue justices were solely entrusted with the to lead the rational inquirer, without excrcise of this latter power; but they confusion or perplexity, through all had no corresponding right to punish, the weanders of our civil and criminal or to controul. Thus one jurisdiction jurisprudence, were tasks which seemed had a right which it could never wish to to require the full exertions of the most exercise ; and tbe other had not that active genius, united with the most in- right, which at every moment, perbaps defatigable iaduslry. Yet in the midst it was necessary to exert. Where the
main springs of municipal government in the sister kingdom; and Mr. Reeves Were thus weak and defective, it is no had the satisfaction, in 1792, to see all wonder that the subordinate wheels of the essential parts of his plan brought the machine should often prove irregu.. forward with a greater spirit than belar, or be suspended in their molions. fore, and by a very lattering majority
The corruption and supineness of the of boti Houses. magistrates of that district became al There is no need to enlarge on the most proverbial : the inferior agents in wisdom of regulations which experithe police offices seemed to pay vo re ence has so fully confirmed, and of gard to any crimes but those which which the happy ivfluence is so widely immediately secured the forty pounds diffused. It is not merely the inbareward: it was even asserted, and proba- bitants of Westminster, or its neighbly with great truth, that the pick pocket bourhood, who enjoy the comforts of and the constable shook bands on most good order and security: the whole nas occasions, and that the robber and the tion is interested in such a system of runner very frequently shared the spoil. reform; and looks up to the authors
It was impossible for Mr. Reeves to of it with admiration aod gratitude. behold the progress of such evils with The blessings of an effective police, now jodifference. Hiš quick discernment so well established round the capital, laid open to him the sources whence Row hence, as from the fountain head, they arose, and his wisdom suggested in an infinite number of channels tbe best expedients for checking and throughout the kingdom. The clamour correcting them. It is evident, he had of drunkenness and riot is every-where as just a sense of the high prerogatives suppressed. The idle and the dissolute of English liberty as any man : he dis are compelled to betake themselves to liked its abridgement in the smallest the pursuits of bonest industry; the particular : but, at the same time, be sous of midnight have learned the danfelt the necessity of imposing due re ger of trusting so their favourite hour, straints on the Bagrant abuse of it. and our streets are no longer infested The industrious part of ibe community by beasts of prey in human shape. But were to be guarded agaiost the allure can it be a matter of surprise, that these meots of bad example, and the persons monsters should growl at the salulary and property of individuals were to be discipline of the law? Will not the secured from depredation and violence. wolf or the tiger attempt to bite the Actuated by these motives, be finished chain that restrains its ferocity. If the the first sketch of his famous Police coercive terrors of Mr. Reeyes's plan Bill, under the encouragement of Lord could admit of any stronger testimony Sydney, then Secretary of State; and in their favour than the applause of every man who exainined it with judg. every good citizen, we must seek it ment and candour, could not but con in the invectives continually poured fess, that it was the most admirable out against them by the profligate aąd system of domestic regulation ever de. the factious. vised, to remedy the contagion of vi It docs great honour to his Majesty's tiated morals, and the inefficacy of a ministers, and particularly to Mr. Dur. defective police.
Das, that the person who devised, reA variety of accidental causes pre duced into form, and laid before goveoted the bill from receiving, at ihat verninent, those patriotic measures, was time, the sanction of the legislature, not forgotten, but was appointed ReAs those causes have since ceased to ceiver under the new billo as a just operate, a detail of them would be acknowledgment of bis former endeaequally tedious and useless. Such, hois. vours. This, however, is not the first ever, was the intrinsic inerit of the plan instance of a due regard paid by' aditself, that the Irish Government took ministration to Mr. Recves's abilitics up its leading principles, and adapted and public spirit. Lord HAWKESBURT them to the city of Dublin. "The bill had promoted him to a law office at the thus modified was highly a proved of Board of Trade in 1787; and he was by the Parliament of Ireland ; and its soon after invited to go to Ireland, salutary effects were soon demonstrated to take a part in a scheme dictated by by the total suppression of abuses in the the soundest, the most liberal, and be. capital of that country. The British 1ficent policy, which had for its object legislature did not remain long inatten the improvement of the system of edutive to the successful experiment inade cation in that kingdom. No man was
better qualified to undertake the task ; to content himself with a hackney and bappy would it have been for Ire. coach. On his way to Sir William's land, bad be continued there long committee,' he saw John yoked with a enough to investigate all the errors and number of the mob to Mr. Waithman's abuses of the established system, and to coach. When his master returned, be carry into execution such plans of re sent for Joba into his study, and, after form, as he should find best adapted to a few expostulatory admonitions to be the state of the country, and to the more attentive to the duties of his genius, the character, and the circum- station for the future, asked bim, bow stances of the people. But, on the he could think of degrading himself death of the Duke of Rutland, under so low beneath the diguity of bis nature, whose patronage he had engaged in so as to change condition with the brutes laudable a design, he returned to Eng. that he was in the habit of driving: land, after a short stay of only three John starod; and twisting the side curl months.
of his buckled wig, replied, that he was The duties of Mr. Reeves's office, at only doing honour to the map of the the Board of Trade, became at this people. why Jobn," said the gentle juncture, uncommonly pressing and im. man, “what is it that this man of the portant. Some of the most considera- people to do for you more than Ibe ble objects of commercial policy were other candidates ?'' -" Do, Sir," aqthen before the board ; and a reference swered Jobo, “ he'll do a great deal, to the voluminous reporls on the slave Sir, if he do.as he promises-- He is to TRADE alone, will satisfy us of his asto- obtaia for us TriANGULAR PARLJAnishing assiduity and despatch. His VENTS and UNIVERSAL SUPFRERINGS.” kealth, however, could not continually kold out in secondiog the efforts of his uoabated zeal: it began to sink under
ANECDOTE OF PETER THE GREAT. incessant fatigue, and he found it neces
Peter the Great having directed the sary to forego the usual pleasures of translation of · Puffendorff's Introducliterary retirement in the summers of tion to the Knowledge of the States of 1788 and 1789, and to employ these io- Europe' into the Russian language, a tervals of official duty in two short ex. Monk, to whoin this translation was cursions to the Continent. A new field committed, presented it to the Emperor soon opened for the exercise of his re
when finished, who turning over the covered vigour.
leaves, exclaimed with an indignant (To be continued.)
air, “ Fool! what did I order you to
do? is this a translation ?” Then reTHE HIVE.
ferring to the original, he shewed bim
a paragraph in which the author had No. XXXIX.
spoken with great asperity of the Rus. sians, but the translator bad omitted
it. The difference between rising every
“ Go instantly," said the Czar, inorning at six and at eighi, in the
" and execute iny orders rigidly. It is course of forty years, supposing a man
not to flatter my subjects that I have retired to rest at ihe same time, announts this book translated and printed, but to
instruct and reform them." to 20,200 hours, or three years, one hundred and twenty-one days, and sixteca bours, which will aiford eight bours a day for exactly ten years ; 80
Many years since, a French teacher, that it is the same as if ten years of of Ducane, called on Mr. Wickham,
resident 'in Oxford, of the name ļite were added, in which we could com. mand eight bours every day for the
a mercer, who lived opposite Voiver. cultivatiou of our minds, or the des: sily College, for a waistcoat.piece,
but could not recollect the name patch of business.
of the material be wished for. He said that “ he thought it was de Eoglish
for de Diable." Mr. Wickham menDuring the recent election for the tioned the several names of his infernal City, a gentleman having ordered his Highness, such as Old Nick, Belzebub, carriage, for the purpose of proceeding &c.-"No, no, it was not dat," was the upon a canvass in behalf of Sir William reply. At last Mr. W. thought of Satan. Corlis, was compelled, in consequence "O dat is vat l vaut,” said Ducave, ali of his coachman being out of the way, vanta Salan vestcoat."-- Oxford Herald.