old; his people will demand a constitution on his death, which his successor may be too prudent to deny, though his inclinations are against it: at heart a very good man, but an absolutist. Austria is quiet and happy; but when Prince Metternich leaves the stage it will lose its present influence, and possibly the Germanic Confederation, which it now bullies, will be dissolved. The King of Bavaria is a patron of art, a bigot, a libertine, and a bad poet. The royal family of Naples is disgusting from its profligacy and violation of all laws. The Pope,—I mean his Holiness the Pope,—through the skilful attentions of a foreign physician, has recovered from an inveterate disease of long standing. Tuscany seems happy and well governed. Spain is not yet free from distractions. Don Carlos is a prisoner in France. Maroto1 has become a traitor, but Cabrera2 is not dead, though this was joyously announced a month ago. I have been led into this tableau of politics I hardly know how; but hope you will excuse it. I have read Legareas article3 on the Roman laws of which you speak. It is learned, and in many respects does him credit, though with a touch of what I will call ‘the-finding-a-mare'snest’ style. Such a style I know was unknown to Aristotle or Blair. He takes Hallam to do for a judgment on certain ancient writers on the Roman law. Hallam is right, and Legare is wrong. The writers have gone to oblivion, and cannot be dragged out of it. The golden writers of the sixteenth century in France will be remembered ever, except in France,where they are now forgotten,—Cujas, Doneau, Dumoulin, and Faber; but that vast body whose tomes weigh down the shelves of the three or four preceding centuries have passed away. Of these I had read in Terrasson, Laferriere, ‘Vita Pauli Jovii,’ &c., and I had pored for several days over the monstrosities of Bartolus. In France it several times happened to me to defend the Roman law against men like Bravard, perhaps the cleverest, as he is the handsomest, of the French professors. Of him Savigny could not speak with any patience. Said he: ‘II s'appelle Bavard à bonne raison,’—thus perverting his name to construct this scandalous calembourg.I was delighted a day or two ago: I went (of course by accident) a little after the hour into Thibaut's lecture-room, and was most decidedly scraped by the students; thus having in my own person and to my own mortification the best evidence of the attentionof the audience to the words of their professor. A servir tout à vous,C. S.P. S. No writer is more overrated in America than Pothier. All in him from the Roman law is laughed at by the wisest heads. His works have gained importance from being relied on by the framers of the French Code.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Chapter 16 : events at home.—Letters of friends.— December , 1837 , to March , 1839 .—Age 26 - 28 .
Chapter 17 : London again.—characters of judges.—Oxford.—Cambridge— November and December , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 18 : Stratford-on-avon.—Warwick.—London.—Characters of judges and lawyers.—authors.—society.— January , 1839 , to March , 1839 .—Age, 28 .
Chapter 19 : Paris again.— March to April , 1839 .—Age, 28 .
Chapter 20 : Italy .— May to September , 1839 .—Age, 28 .
Chapter 21 : Germany .— October , 1839 , to March , 1840 .—Age, 28 - 29 .
Chapter 22 : England again, and the voyage home.— March 17 to May 3 , 1840 . —Age 29 .
Chapter 23 : return to his profession.— 1840 - 41 .—Age, 29 - 30 .
Chapter 24 : Slavery and the law of nations.— 1842 .—Age, 31 .
Chapter 25 : service for Crawford .—The Somers Mutiny.—The nation's duty as to slavery.— 1843 .—Age, 32 .
Chapter 27 : services for education.—prison discipline.—Correspondence.— January to July , 1845 .—age, 34 .
Chapter 28 : the city Oration,— the true grandeur of nations. —an argument against war.— July 4 , 1845 .—Age 34 .
2 Ramon Cabrera, a Spanish general, born in 1810; a Carlist remarkable for his cruelties. He was severely wounded in 1849, and soon after went to London, where he married a wealthy English woman. He died in May, 1877.
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