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A Rationale Of Judicial Evidence, Specially Applied To English Practice.

BENTHAM, Jeremy [1748-1832]. 5 Volumes. 8vo. pp. xxii, 606; xii, 700; xii, 658; xii, 645; xii, 787. with half-titles. index. A very good copy, bound in plain modern cloth. old review clipping mounted on front blanks. First Edition. Edited from Bentham's manuscripts, with preface, by John Stuart Mill. A landmark in the field of legal philosophy. "Bentham was one of the first scholars in English legal history to analyze the rules of evidence by reference to philosophy and logic. He called English evidence law the 'technical fee-gathering system' whose obscure rules and formalities were repugnant to the ends of justice. Evidence rules existed almost exclusively at common law, yet judges were not accountable for the decisions they rendered. Bentham argued that judges and lawyers used their stations to produce expense and delay in legal proceedings in order to make better business for themselves. The augmentation of profit constituted the goal of the technical fee-gathering system, while diminution and resolution of crime was only a collateral concern. For Bentham, this system was problematic because it was set up to further the financial and personal interests of a small professional class, rather than to further the interests of society as a whole." (Alanah Josey, Jeremy Bentham and Canadian Evidence Law: The Utilitarian Perspective on Mistrial Applications, Manitoba Law Journal) "Bentham's theory of evidence (or evidence and proof) in law is primarily a design theory for a system of adjective law, the main role of which is to implement substantive law assumed to be consonant with utility. The direct end of procedure is rectitude of decision, that is, correct application of law deemed to be good to true facts by means of reasoning based on relevant evidence. The indirect end of procedure is avoidance of preponderant vexation, expense and delay also judged by utility. Thus evidence is the means to arrive at truth in adjudication, and Bentham firmly stated that no artificial binding rules could promote rectitude of decision.Bentham's ideas may have seemed radical, his attacks on the legal profession may not have forwarded his case and his influence on law reform may have not been as direct as has often been stated, but there is no doubt that the mainstream set of working assumptions in law today, in most kinds of decision-making and in everyday life, are dominant, despite post-modernist, relativist and other sceptical tendencies. Seek empirical truth by informal inferential reasoning based on evidence in the presence of the parties." (William Twining, Bentham's Theory of Evidence: Setting a Context, Journal of Bentham Studies) Sweet & Maxwell II p. 27. Marke p. 524. Marvin p. 113.
  • $4,500
  • $4,500