It is learned without a show of learning. To have been able to accomplish such a matter is no small subject of rejoicing. I am glad to see you grow. You have improved your style in proportions and muscle. It bears in that article a favorable comparison with a strong, healthy, well-built man. Did you get that Latin quotation from Persius? That was the only thing I would ask to strike out. It was far-fetched, knotty, and hard to be translated.Near the close of his second year in the Law School, he began to write for the ‘American Jurist,’ a law periodical which maintained a high rank, and numbered among its contributors Theron Metcalf, Simon Greenleaf, Luther S. Cushing, George S. Hillard, and Dr. I. Ray. Some of its series of articles—notably, Judge Metcalf's on Contracts—afterwards grew into treatises. Willard Phillips—author of the treatise on ‘The Law of Insurance’—was the editor. Sumner's first contribution was to the number for July, 1833,—a notice of a lecture before King's College, London, by Professor J. J. Park, on ‘Courts of Equity.’1 The article defines at some length and with happy illustrations the distinction between law and equity, then much misconceived. Judge Story noted it, in his ‘Equity Jurisprudence,’ as ‘a forcible exposition of the prevalent errors on the subject,’ and as ‘full of useful comment and research.’2 It is a thoughtful and well-written paper, entirely worthy of a lawyer who had added practice to his professional studies. Sumner's method of composition changed perceptibly while he was in the Law School. His style became more compact, his vocabulary more select, his thought clearer and more exact. His topics exercised the critical faculty, and the discipline of legal studies counteracted his tendency to diffuseness. He was, more than before, the master of his material. There was not as yet the glow, the earnestness, or the moral inspiration which were afterwards the peculiar traits of his writings; these were reserved for a period when his life was to be among events rather than among books. His freedom of thought, and his sympathy with new ideas and reforms, checked probably in some measure by his association with conservative teachers, appear thus early
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