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suspect himself, to sift his motives, and to search his heart to the bottom, if he finds himself on the verge of hastily resisting plans interfering with some of the powers, privileges, or forms of Courts of Justice, and their dependencies ; or proposals apparently pointing to the extension of some of the rights of the people. And if he perceives his brethren of the profession united in countenancing or in opposing any particular measure; let him be on his guard against being induced to co-operate with them rather by sympathy, and the esprit de corps, than by fair and deliberate conviction.

The Barrister who has a feat in the House of Commons is not to forget his Clients at the Bar, nor to sacrifice their interests to his political pursuits. It may indeed be alleged, and with truth, that his employers are conscious of his parliamentary avocations; and, by spon. taneously preferring his affistance to that of another Counfel, shew themselves willing to submit to the inconveniences necessarily arifing from them. But he is not to make ufe of this plea as an excuse for needless inattention to their concerns ; nor for wilfully failing to satisfy the expectations, which he knows himself to have excited in their minds.

tention fomenters


It commonly happens that a Parliamentary Lawyer of distinguished merit has the option, sooner or later, of one of those high legal situations, the possessors of which are confidered as in the immediate service of the Crown. The observations already made in a former chapter appropriated to the duties of the Executive Officers of Government, though without a direct reference to these particular posts, may sufficiently explain the general motives by which he ought to be influenced in accepting or declining the station proposed; in discharging its duties ; and, finally, in refigning it. It remains only to add the following very necessary caution: That he is not to conceive himself, when possessed of the office, as · leagued on the side of the Crown against the People; nor pledged to support the existing Administration in measures at which his understanding and conscience revolt; nor at liberty to pursue as libellers and

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fomenters of sedition, those who censure the measures of Government, or canvass any real public grievances, with candour, fairness, and moderation.

IV. Our fourth general head was allotted to an enquiry into the peculiar duties of Judges.

Among the many important advantages resulting to society from the institution of an order of Barristers, we are to place this in the foremost rank; that it supplies a conti, nual succession of men qualified and worthy to preside in the Courts of Justice. Were it not for this nursery, in which Merit is trained under the diređing hand of Experience; this probationary stage, on which the Student at once makes himself master of his profession, and gives public proof of his attainments; how could we hope, in a country like Great Britain, wherein the unlimited diffusion and complicated nature of property ; the possession of freedom, which leaves nothing to be determined by the arbitrary will of a superior ; the extension of commerce, and the magnitude of the national revenues, have rendered the laws so numerous and so intricate, to fill the tribunals with Judges to whose talents and integrity we might safely commit our fortunes, our characters, and our lives? Theirs is an office for which young men are little adapted. Young men would prove deficient in the requisites of knowledge and practical wisdom; and would

; feldom be found endowed with that fobriety of judgement, and that degree of patience, which are essential to the proper discharge of so important a trust. Yet were it not for the practice of the Bar, where could the future Judge employ his less steady years in gaining these indispensable qualifications ? Or, were we to suppose them at length attainable by private and persevering application to the study of written authorities; and a seat on the Bench to be far more profitable and even more honourable than it is at present; what candidate, amidst the many objects of more ready acquisition continually offering them= selves to his eye, would fix his views on this distant prize, not to be reached but by a flow and laborious journey of many years; or, after selecting it, would have constancy of mind both


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to persevere in the pursuit, and to render him, self deferving of final success ? Or what young man of limited finances, and it is from persons of that description that the greatest and most meritorious exertions are naturally to be expected, would think it consistent with common prudence to risk his time and fortune in a toillome, protracted, and precari-us enterprise; while conscious that he inight find himself in the end disappointed in his most flattering prospects, and overwhelmed by penury and distress?

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Whenever we look on the profession of the Law as the source from which the fupreme judicial magistrates are to be derived, we discover in that consideration a powerful additional reason for solicitude, that it may not be suffered to fall into such hands as might lower it in the national opinion. That solicitude will be increased by the recollection of another very important benefit, which accrues to the community from the members of that institu. tion; a benefit which will be fitly noticed in this place, as it has an immediate reference to the purity and general character of the Judges.



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