The Trial of Jesus from a Lawyer's Standpoint: The Hebrew Trial and The Roman Trial (Complete)by Walter M. Chandler
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The trial of Socrates before the dicastery of Athens, charged with corrupting Athenian youth, with blaspheming the Olympic gods, and with seeking to destroy the constitution of the Attic Republic, is still a sublime and thrilling chapter in the history of a wonderful people, among the ruins and wrecks of whose genius the modern world still wanders to contemplate, admire, and study the pride of every master and the perfection of every model.
The trial and execution of Charles the First of England sealed with royal blood a new covenant of British freedom, and erected upon the highway of national progress an enduring landmark to civil liberty. The entire civilized world stood aghast at the solemn and awful spectacle of the deliberate beheading of a king. And yet, to-day, the sober, serious judgment of mankind stamps the act with approval, and deems it a legitimate and righteous step in the heroic march of a brave and splendid people toward a complete realization of the inalienable rights of man. The philosopher of history declares these condemnatory and executory proceedings against a Stuart king worthy of all the epoch making movements that have glorified the centuries of English constitutional growth, and have given to mankind the imperishable parchments of Magna Charta, the Bill of Rights, the Petition of Rights, and Habeas Corpus.
The trial of Warren Hastings in the hall of William Rufus has been immortalized by Lord Macaulay. This trial is a virtual reproduction in English history of the ancient Roman trial of Verres. England is substituted for Rome; Sicily becomes India; Hastings takes the place of Verres; and Burke is the orator instead of Cicero. The indictments are identical: Maladministration in the government of a province. In the impeachment of Hastings, England served notice upon her colonial governors and made proclamation to the world that English conquest was not intended to despoil and enslave, but was designed to carry to the inhabitants of distant lands her language, her literature, and her laws. This message to humanity was framed but not inspired by England. It was prompted by the success of the American Revolution, in which Washington and his Continentals had established the immortal principle, that the consent of the governed is the true source of all just powers of government.
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