Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States

Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States

by Joseph Story


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Joseph Story's famous and influential review of the origins, influences, and early interpretations of the Constitution is now presented in the author's own 1833 Abridged Edition-considered the most useful and readable version of this important work, from the Supreme Court's youngest Justice. The new, affordable paperback edition adds a 2013 introduction by Kermit Roosevelt III.

One of the United States' most influential legal scholars and jurists, Joseph Story wrote his landmark treatise before the Civil War, describing federalism, states' histories, freedoms, and constitutional structure. He abridged it into this usable book. Adding a new and informative Foreword by constitutional scholar Kermit Roosevelt III of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, the Quid Pro edition features modern and readable formatting (compared to mere photocopies of the original, with its expansive and dated print size), as well as embedded pagination from the original, for continuity of referencing and citation. Professor Roosevelt catalogs many instances in which the current Court has relied on this book to decide issues of gun rights, federalism, and privacy. In addition, he provides a fascinating biographical summary of Story and describes the origins of this monumental work, as well as the sway it has had on legal history since 1833.

Part of the Legal Legends Series from Quid Pro Books. The series also includes legendary works, in quality ebook and print formats, from Oliver Wendell Holmes, Louis Brandeis, Roscoe Pound, Benjamin Cardozo, Thomas Reed Powell, John Chipman Gray, Woodrow Wilson, and Karl Llewellyn. These editions are introduced and explained by today's recognized scholars in the field, and they exhibit a care in reproduction and presentation that often is lacking in modern republications of historic books.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781530151509
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 02/20/2016
Pages: 776
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.54(d)

About the Author

Joseph Story (1779-1845) was an influential Justice of the United States Supreme Court before the Civil War and an author of legendary legal treatises on the Constitution and conflict of laws. He was also a frequent lecturer at the Harvard Law School in its early years. •

• Kermit Roosevelt III (contributor of the new 2013 Introduction to the Quid Pro 'Legal Legends' edition of this book) is a professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He clerked for the U.S. Supreme Court and practiced law in Chicago before joining the Penn faculty. He is the author of 'The Myth of Judicial Activism' as well as the novel 'In the Shadow of the Law.'

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER XVII. POWER TO COIN MONEY AND FIX THE STANDARD OF WEIGHTS AND MEASURES. § 1116. The next power of Congress is " to coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures."1 § 1117. Under the confederation, the continental congress had delegated to them " the sole and exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the States," and " fixing the standard of weights and measures throughout the United States." It is observable that, under the confederation, there was no power given to regulate the value of foreign coin, an omission which, in a great measure, would destroy any uniformity in the value of the current coin, since the respective States might, by different regulations, create a different value in each.2 The Constitution has, with great propriety, cured this defect; and, indeed, the whole clause, as it now stands, does not seem to have attracted any discussionin the convention.1 It has been justly remarked, that the power "to coin money" would, doubtless, include that of regulating its value, had the latter power not been expressly inserted. But the Constitution abounds with pleonasms and repetitions of this nature.2 1 [After the breaking out of the great civil war in 1861, it was deemed necessary by Congress, in order to supply the means of carrying on the war, to issue a large amount of treasury notes, and to make them a legal tender in payment of private debts, and also of all public dues except duties on imports and interest on the public debt. These notes thereupon, to a large extent, became the circulating medinm of the country, and goldand silver ceased to be used in ordinary traffic, except on the Pacific slope. The constitutiona...

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