Welsh Journals

Search over 450 titles and 1.2 million pages

Y kM1> A KYNV*t> Y B R TJ D A SYLWY DD; OR, €ỳt Cfjrcmds anìr <&b$tvütv. Rhif. 8.] No. 8.] AWST 15, 1828. AUGUST 15, 1828. [Cyf. L [Vol. I. THE LAWS OF BKGLAKD, Among the many causes which have contributed to make Great Britain, rather than her constitution, " the envy of surrounding nations, and the admiration of the world," none have had a greater share in producing this effect, than the superiority of her laws to those of any other State, that has existed long enough to bring all its energy into action. The laws of Englandhave, at least until lately, kept pace with the progressive im- provement of the English character; while its principles were such, as first to excite, and then leave in a great degree uncurbed, a disposition to im- prove in character. Were it not for the early infusion of those principles, which originally surpassed the na- tional character, into the lawr, at the expense of its consistency indeed, the laws and character of the English like those of other nations, wrould be suitable to each other, and like them would both continue almost station- ary. Very superficial acquaintance with the History of England will satisfy any one that the lawrs and Constitution of England did once surpass the general character of the people: that these once pulled us on in the way of improvement; but Avhen once moved, we did not stop when we came up with them. Now our character as a nation surpass our laws. Industry is curbed by the direct restriction, and other legal dis- couragements. The principles which are to be admired in the law, only make its defects more glaring. We are duly sensible of the danger which he, who is anxious to avoid being classed with vain cavillers, incurs by presuming to find any con- siderable defects or errors in the law. In this profession we certainly find the greatest exercise of ingenuity, added to the most assiduous applica- tion. Emulation daily keeps alive the exertions of the pleader. In no other profession or trade does emula- tion—the universal stiraulus to every thing great—act so strongly, and in- cessantly. In none else are competi- tors similarly confronted every hour. In none does successdepend so entirely upon real merit. The abilities of the pleader, also, unite in an eminent degree, qualities—both the popular, and the profound acquisitions—which are not in other iustances often re- markable in the same person. Had we not the most satisfactory reasons on our side, we should not, under these circumstances, presume to throw out suggestions for anything like a radical reform in this science, as we have done with other sciences. But when lawyers themselves advocate such reform, others are less likely to connive at its faults. We do not in- tend to follow íhe steps which Mr. Brougham adopted. Were all Mr. Brougham's utmost wishes to be ful- filled, the law would not cease to stand in need of refonn.