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Research Canons

Books and articles that are essential to a new academic in various areas of legal inquiry as suggested by contributors to PrawfsBlawg.


  1. Paul A Brand, The Origins of the English Legal Profession, 5 Law & Hist. Rev. 31 (1987) (suggested by Christopher). 
  2. Gerald J. Postema, Gerald J. Classical Common Law Jurisprudence, Part 1, 2 Oxford U. Commonwealth L.J. 155 (2002) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  3. Gerald J. Postema, Classical Common Law Jurisprudence, Part 2, 3 Oxford U. Commonwealth L.J. 1 (2003) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 



  1. J. H. Baker, Introduction to English Legal History (4th ed. 2005) (suggested by Christopher).  
  2. John Baker, The Oxford History of the Laws of England Volume VI: 1483-1558 (2003) (suggested by Christopher).  
  3. J. M. Beattie, Crime and the courts in England, 1660-1800 (1986) (suggested by Christopher).  
  4. J. Harold Berman, Law and Revolution: The Formation of the Western Legal Tradition (1983) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  5. Michael Kent Curtis, No State Shall Abridge: the Fourteenth Amendment and the Bill of Rights (1986) (suggested by Ron Wright). 
  6. Arthur Engelmann, History of Continental Civil Procedure (1927) (suggested by Christopher). 
  7. Adhemar Esmein, History of Continental Criminal Procedure (1913) (suggested by Christopher).  
  8. Barbara H. Fried,  The Progressive Assault on Laissez Faire: Robert Hale and the First Law and Economics Movement (1998) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell).   
  9. Charles Montgomery Gray, Copyhold, Equity and the Common Law (1963) (suggested by Christopher).  
  10. Thomas Andrew Green, Verdict According to Conscience: perspectives on the English criminal trial jury, 1200-1800 (1985) (suggested by Christopher).  
  11.  R. H. Helmholz,  Oxford History of the Law of England (Vol. 1 2004) (suggested by Christopher).
  12.  Richard H. Helmholz, Select Cases on Defamation to 1600 (1985) (suggested by Christopher).  
  13. William Searle Holdsworth's History (A. L. Goodhart & H. G. Hanbury ed.) (suggested by Christopher).  
  14.  J. C. Holt, Magna Carta (2nd ed. 1992) (suggested by Christopher).  
  15. Morton J. Horwitz, The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860 (1977) (suggested by Dude). 
  16. Morton Horwitz, The Transformation of American Law, 1870-1960: the Crisis of Legal Orthodoxy (1992) (suggested by Scott Fruehwald).
  17. David Ibbetson, A historical introduction to the law of obligations (1999) (suggested by Christopher).  
  18. Martti Koskenniemi,  The Gentle Civilizer of Nations: The Rise and Fall of International Law, 1870-1960 (2002) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell).  
  19. John H. Langbein, Origins of Adversary Criminal Trial (2003) (suggested by Christopher).  
  20. Michael R. T. MacNair, Law of Proof in Early Modern Equity (1999) (suggested by Christopher).  
  21. S. F. C. Milsom, Historical Foundations of the Common Law (1969) (suggested by Christopher).  
  22. S. F. C. Milsom, Studies in the History of the Common Law (1985) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  23. S. F. C. Milsom, A Natural History of the Common Law (2003) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  24.  J. G. A. Pocock, The ancient constitution and the feudal law: a study of English historical thought in the seventeenth century (1957) (suggested by Christopher).  
  25. Frederick Pollock & Frederic William Maitland, The History of English Law Before the Time of Edward I (2 Volumes 1898) (suggested by Christopher).  
  26. Gerald J. Postema, Bentham and the Common Law Tradition (1986) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  27. Ian Shapiro, The Evolution of Rights in Liberal Theory (1986) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  28. A. W. Brian Simpson, A History of the Common Law of Contract : the Rise of the Action of Assumpsit (1975) (suggested by Christopher).  
  29. Eileen Spring, Law, Land, and Family : Aristocratic Inheritance in England, 1300 to 1800  (1993) (suggested by Christopher).  
  30. Peter Stein, Roman Law in European History (1999) (suggested by Christopher).  
  31. Donald W. Sutherland, Assize of Novel Disseisin (1973) (suggested by Christopher).  
  32. James Bradley Thayer, Preliminary Treatise on Evidence at the Common Law (1898) (suggested by Christopher).  
  33. R.C. van Caenegem, The Birth of the English Common Law (1988) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  34. R. C. van Caenegem, Legal History: A European Perspective (1991) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  35. R. C. van Caenegem, An Historical Introduction to International Private Law (D.E.L. Johnston, tr. 1992) (suggested by Patrick S. O'Donnell). 
  36. Alan Watson, Evolution of Western Private Law (2000) (suggested by Christopher).  
  37. Alan Watson, Legal Transplants: An Approach to Comparative Law (1993) (suggested by Christopher).  
  38. G. Edward White, Tort Law in America: an Intellectual History (2003 ) (suggested by Scott Fruehwald).‚Äč


  1.  Law and History Review (suggested by Dude.