Palladium Of Justice

Palladium Of Justice

by Leonard W. Levy


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Trial by jury is the mainstay of the accusatorial system of criminal justice. Here one of our most distinguished constitutional scholars, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Leonard Levy, brings his formidable skills to bear in tracing the development of what many great legal minds have called the “Palladium of Justice.” Mr. Levy identifies the roots of trial by jury in the inquest, a medieval investigatory body whose members were sworn to tell the truth and whose verdicts of guilt or innocence were used by royal courts. From about 1376 the custom of requiring a unanimous verdict from twelve jurors developed. By the mid-fifteenth century, juries—supposedly representative of the community—were beginning to hear evidence that was produced in court. No one could lose life, limb, liberty, or property in a civil or criminal case without a unanimous verdict of guilt. In the American colonies, trial by jury thrived, and from the time of Peter Zenger’s famous test of press freedom in 1735, the jury decided the law as well as the facts. By 1776 trail by jury was a common right. Recounting the history with his characteristic clarity, vigor, and elegance of expression, Mr. Levy has given us a brilliant and useful summary of one of our most cherished freedoms.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781566633130
Publisher: Dee, Ivan R. Publisher
Publication date: 08/25/2000
Pages: 125
Product dimensions: 6.68(w) x 8.44(h) x 0.45(d)

About the Author

Leonard W. Levy, whose Origins of the Fifth Amendment won the Pulitzer Prize in history, is formerly Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional History at Brandeis University and Andrew W. Mellon All-Claremont Professor of Humanities and History at the Claremont Graduate School. His other writings, many of which have also won awards, include Origins of the Fifth Amendment, Blasphemy, The Establishment Clause, Freedom of the Press from Zenger to Jefferson, Original Intent and the Framers' Constitution, and Jefferson and Civil Liberties. He lives in Ashland, Oregon.

Table of Contents

IRival Systems of Criminal Justice3
IIInquisitorial versus Accusatorial Procedures31
IIIThe Double Jury System55
IVTrial Juries69
A Note on Sources107

What People are Saying About This

Atlantic Monthly


Louis Fisher

A compact, lucid analysis from a master of constitutional disputes.
author of American Constitutional Law

William E. Leuchtenburg

author of The Supreme Court Reborn

Stanley I. Kutler

Incisively, thoroughly, and thoughtfully-as always-Leonard Levy offers his historical meaning and understanding to one of our most basic rights.

Forrest McDonald

Erudite, fascinating, inspiring, and relevant to our times.
author of We the People

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