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E Pluribus Unum – How the Common Law Helped Unify and Liberate Colonial America, 1607-1776 | Oxford Scholarship Online
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E Pluribus Unum: How the Common Law Helped Unify and Liberate Colonial America, 1607-1776

William E. Nelson

Abstract

This book examines the role of the common law in the life and politics of Great Britain’s North American colonies from the founding of Virginia in 1607 to the outbreak of the American Revolution in 1775–76. The main theme of the book is that when the different colonies were initially founded, they followed very different law—typically not the common law of England. But over the course of the seventeenth century and first half of the eighteenth century, the colonies all received the common law, with the result that by the 1750s the common law constituted the foundation of every colony’s law and ... More

Keywords: Charles II, common law, debt, military law, pleading, Puritan law, reception, William III

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780190880804
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2019 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190880804.001.0001

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

William E. Nelson, author
Professor of Law, New York University