‘Between the University and the Temple’ (1744–53)
This chapter begins with an account of All Souls College, where Blackstone was elected to a fellowship in 1743. It discusses his two earliest surviving letters, both written from All Souls, which illuminate his maturing attitudes and values, as does the remarkable poem ‘A Lawyer's Farewell to his Muse’, which sets out an ambitious agenda of legal reform and renovation. After glancing at the nature of the civil law studies which led to his graduation with a BCL degree in mid-1745, we move on to consider his study of the common law at London's Middle Temple, and subsequent ill-starred attempt to establish a practice as a barrister in the central courts of Westminster Hall, while remaining heavily involved in Oxford commitments. The chapter concludes by examining the implications of his accepting a provincial legal post, as recorder of the Berkshire borough of Wallingford.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.