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Unformatted text preview: al course of things was forwarded by the multiplicity of business, which flowed into that court, and which daily augmented by the appeals from all the subordinate judicatures of the kingdom. In the Saxon times, no appeal was received in the king’s court, except upon the denial or delay of justice by the inferior courts; and the same practice was still observed in most of the feudal kingdoms of Europe. But the great power of the Conqueror established at first in England an authority, which the monarchs in France were not able to attain till the reign of St. Lewis, who lived near two centuries after: He empowered his court to receive appeals both from the courts of barony and the county-courts, and by that means brought the administration of justice ultimately into the hands of the sovereign.d And lest the expence or trouble of a journey to court should discourage suitors, and make them acquiesce in the decision of the inferior judicatures, itinerant judges were afterwards established, who made their circuits throughout the kingdom, and tried all causes that were brought before them.e By this expedient, the courts of barony were kept in awe; and if they still preserved some influence, it was only from the apprehensions, which the vassals might entertain, of disobliging their superior, by appealing from his jurisdiction. But the county-courts were much discredited; and as the freeholders were found ignorant of the intricate principles and forms of the new law, the lawyers gradually brought all business before the king’s judges, and abandoned the ancient simple and popular judicature. After this manner, the formalities of justice, which, though they appear tedious and cumbersome, are found requisite to the support of liberty in all monarchical governments, proved at first, by a combination of causes, very advantageous to royal authority in England. The power of the Norman kings was also much supported by a Revenue of the great revenue; and by a revenue, that was fixed, perpetual, and crown. independant of the subject. The people, without betaking themselves to arms, had no check upon the king, and no regular security for the due administration of justice. In those days of violence, many instances of oppression passed unheeded; and soon after were openly pleaded as precedents, which it was unlawful to dispute or controul. Princes and ministers were too ignorant to be themselves sensible of the advantages attending an equitable administration; and there was no established council or assembly which could protect the people, and, by PLL v5 (generated January 22, 2010) 319 http://oll.libertyfund.org/title/695 Online Library of Liberty: The History of England, vol. 1 withdrawing supplies, regularly and peaceably admonish the king of his duty, and ensure the execution of the laws. The first branch of the king’s stated revenue was the royal demesnes or crown-lands, which were very extensive, and comprehended, beside a great number of manors, most of the chief cities of th...
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This note was uploaded on 02/12/2011 for the course CHIN 101 taught by Professor Dr.yu during the Spring '08 term at University Of Southern Mississippi .
- Spring '08