The Roots of Liberty is a critical collection of essays on the origin and nature of the often elusive idea of liberty. The essays address early medieval developments, encompassing such seminal issues as the common-law mind of the sixteenth century under the Tudor monarchs, the struggle for power and authority between the Stuart kings and Parliament in the seventeenth century, and the role of the ancient constitution in the momentous legal and constitutional debate that occurred between the Glorious Revolution and the American Declaration of Independence.
This famed Payne edition of Select Works of Edmund Burke is universally revered by students of English history and political thought. Volume 1, Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents and The Two Speeches on America, contains Burke’s brilliant defense of the American colonists’ complaints of British policy, including “Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents” (1770), “Speech on American Taxation” (1774), and “Speech on Conciliation” (1775). Volume 2 consists of Burke’s renowned Reflections on the Revolution in France. Volume 3 presents Burke’s Four Letters on the Proposals for Peace with the Regicide Directory of France—generally styled Letters on a Regicide Peace (1795–1796).
Lord Acton was among the most illustrious historians of nineteenth-century England, a man of great learning with a deep devotion to individual liberty and a profound understanding of history. Liberty Fund is proud to offer the most complete collection of Acton essays ever published.
Written for the layman as well as the attorney, The Story of Law is the only complete outline history of the law ever published. “It is,” too, noted journalist William Allen White of the original edition, “the sort of book that any lawyer could take home and give to his children in their teens and twenties as a justification of his career.” Moreover, The Story of Law has well been termed “the perfect book for introducing the beginning law student to the origin and history of the law.” John M. Zane lucidly describes the growth and improvement of the law over thousands of years, and he points out that an increasing awareness of the individual as a person who is responsible for decision and action gradually transformed the law. The seventeen chapters include “The Physical Basis of Law,” “Law Among Primordial Men,” “Babylonian Law,” “The Jewish Law,” “Law Among the Greeks,” “The Roman Creation of Modern Law,” “Medieval Law in Europe,” “The Origins of English Law,” and “International Law.” Professor Charles J. Reid, Jr., of Emory University School of Law, has contributed an unsurpassed forty-page “Selected Bibliography on Legal History” that will be of enormous interest to academics, students, practicing attorneys, and general readers alike.
For much of Europe the seventeenth century was, as it has been termed, an “Age of Absolutism” in which single rulers held tremendous power. Yet the English in the same century succeeded in limiting the power of their monarchs. The English Civil War in midcentury and the Glorious Revolution of 1688 were the culmination of a protracted struggle between kings eager to consolidate and even extend their power and subjects who were eager to identify and defend individual liberties. The source and nature of sovereignty was of course the central issue. Did sovereignty reside solely with the Crown—as claimed theorists of “the divine right”? Or did sovereignty reside in a combination of Crown and Parliament—or perhaps in only the House of Commons—or perhaps, again, in the common law, or even in “the people”?
This famed Payne edition of Select Works of Edmund Burke is universally revered by students of English history and political thought.
This is a new edition of Edmund Burke’s first work, originally issued anonymously in 1756 as a letter attributed to “a late noble writer.” In 1757 Burke produced a revised version with a new preface but still did not attach his name to the work.