Thursday, March 23, 2017

Anglo-Latinity: The Lost Tradition

In Elizabethan England, there were some 360 Grammar schools (higher than primary or elementary schools) teaching Latin to 9-12 year olds, about one school for every 12,000 persons. On this basis, we can estimate between 40,000 to 400,000 Latinate individuals at the height of the "Northern Re-nascance", perhaps 10% of the population at the high, but reasonable end of 10,000 graduates a year for the whole school system, for a whole generation. Of books and other published materials, Latin comprises about 10% in the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods (this is indeed compared to 90%+ of all available manuscript materials from earlier ages, the balance being the various vernacular tongues). Considering how much printed material is ephemeral, we can see that most of what we would assign to the realm of "Education" today would have been Latinate.

Latin speakers had an important minority status in Tudor and Early Stuart Britain, perhaps not unlike German-speakers in 19th century America, or Welsh-speakers today. Latin (and some Greek) was expected for anyone who could call himself a Gentleman, a member not only of the aristocratic nobility, but of the gentry as well. Anyone, of course, who had in mind a clerical or academic career would find himself in an environment where knowledge of Latin was taken for granted.

Connection with Latinate culture was also increasingly suspect, from the mid 16th century on.
The three crucial events for Anglo-Latinity, for the privileged but Latin-speaking minority of England and the rest of Britain, were: the Dissolution, the Gunpowder plot, and the Regicide of King Charles I. Taking the last first, we see, after 1649, the writing of Latin drops off markedly. We are left with an impression that the Latin-speaking minority was suddenly dispossessed, or went underground, or could no longer get their work published. This alone should indicate the political, ethnic, and racial (family-genetic-class) dimensions of Latinity.
Latin-speakers were not dispersed in the population. The supression of Latin, by the Commonwealth, has something of the air of ethnic cleansing about it.

Not all Commonwealth men were anti-Latinate. On the contrary, they were the first Conservatives. In overthrowing and dispossession the clerks, the prelates, the loyal gentry, and the monarchy, they took care to "save and preserve" what they respected. The lawyers who led the revolution continued to wish the barrier to entry that a reading and writing knowledge of Latin would present. Disputations at Oxford were conducted in Greek rather than Latin, since Greek was the language of the Bible, not the language of hated Rome. Thus, we get that curious mixture of pedantry and revolution, the hallmark of post-revolutionary Academia today.

It was also important to have a few expert Latinists about to carry on correspondence with the Enemy, who still occupied Europe. Thus, John Milton was put in charge of foreign correspondence. Even if one kills or locks up all the Latin-speakers and other linguists, you still need a few sound ones about to run the CIA and what not.

Thus, the critical phase of destroying the bilingual Anglo-Latin peoples and replacing them with an English-only commisarat did not do much to Latinate Education--except undermine its living basis. Where before there was a freshness and spontaneity about Latin, and strong connections looking further back for a millenium, after 1649 we have mere survivals, and a rising curve of academic excellence to fill in the void left by life, rather like formaldehyde in a dead corpse.

The other two turning points are easily related: the Dissolution destroyed the medieval school system. The founding of St. Paul's school and the King Edward Grammar schools were a partial remedy and a topic for another post.

The Gunpowder plot seems to have driven much of Latin literature underground for a decade--the beginning of the end, so to speak, as many Latinists must have gotten a foretaste of what was coming. If one plots the dates of Latinate drama in Elizabethan England, for example those available in the Library of Humanistic Texts, the production is quite robust up to 1605. Suddenly, everything is "anonymous Jesuit drama". One supposes the usual suspects were rounded up. The chilling effect is palpable. One suspects as well, just like the German-speaking communities in the Great War, or the Japanese Americans in the Second, that to be Latinate in the early Jacobean period was to come under instant suspicion.

In any event, these Anglo-Latinity posts will trace the history of the Anglo-Latins, from first beginnings up to the Age of Johnson or a bit beyond, and any survivals into the contemporary period.

Anglo-Latinity: John Milton's Role

We begin our study of the Anglo-Latin tradition with one of its chief destroyers, John Milton (1608/9-1674). Milton was born just after the accession of James I, the second King of America** (not to mention the first of a Britain uniting England to Scotland). Milton was educated at St. Paul's school, the heart of the Northern Re-nascance in England, i.e. the center point of the recovery of Anglo-Latinity that followed the disastrous Dissolution. Whether Elizabethan England ever achieve Latinate literacy levels of the early Tudors is still debated. The achievements, none the less, are impressive.

** the name for what we now call "America" was at first Virginia. The other colonies were carved out the whole. The name America is anachronistic here, of course.

At St. Paul's, Milton would have been immersed in the Humanist tradition of John Colet, Desiderius Erasmus, William Lily, Sir Thomas More, and others. The standard grammar book for the post-Dissolution phase of Anglo-Latinity (just as Donatus was before**) was a composite work prepared for St. Paul's under the direction of John Colet by William Lily, and containing contributions, corrections, and edits from Erasmus, and Lily's students. William Lily should not be confused with his grandson, the famous stylist and founder of Euphuism in Rhetoric, John Lily. Erasmus wrote his essay De Ratione Studii specifically as a blueprint for St. Paul's, and supplied De Duplici Copia Verborum** et Rerum, a Latin phrase-book for the better making of Latins. For spoken Latin, his dialogues, or Colloquia were already in circulation, as were his witty proverbs, Adagia, or adages. These texts remained at the core of Anglo-Latinity from the 16th century to the early 19th century. Numerous copies can be found in American libraries of the founding fathers. John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Alexander Hamilton, along with many others, are well within the tradition, if somewhat hostile to its implicit Toryism.

** the old-fashioned (obsolete, early Modern English) name for a grammar book is a "donate", in recognition of this fact. Copia verborum has been frequently mis-translated by those who have not understood that copia is the standard grammatical term in late Medieval Latin for a phrase. It is not "an abundance of words" but simply "a phrase". It is a term of art.

Lily's grammar was taken over bodily into later works, for use in the first two stages of Anglo-Latin education, the teaching of Accidence and Syntax, supplemented by instructions in sententiae and colloquies, as described by Prof. William Ziobo. See his Syllabus for Classical America at Holy Cross:

which is part of a larger site:

In addition to becoming the core teaching text of American Anglo-Latinity, along with "Cordery", or the Sententiae Pueriles of Corderius, Lily's grammar also became, from 1752 to 1868, the Eton Latin Grammar, thus projecting it beyond the period of Anglo-Latinity proper. In a future post, I will trace extracts from and references to this grammar in Franklin's New England Courant, American novels of the Federalist period, and finally its death as a punchline for a drinking toast, in a collection of witty after-dinner aphorisms for the new elite of the ante bellum American north.

Lily's grammar, or rather Thomas Linacre's first draft of it, as translated into Latin by Scotsman George Buchanan (digital page images), was revised by Milton in his old age as his work Accidence Commenc'd. This fact makes the bulk of Lily accessible to us today, since any university library of any worth will have, tucked away somewhere, the complete prose works of Milton in the Columbia edition. These fill a bookshelf, and cover almost all of English education in one way or another. Milton wrote, besides his famous poetry in English, poetry in Latin, Greek, and Italian, a History of Britain, a textbook on the Logic of Petrus Ramus, a revision of Lily's Grammar, various works on Politics (his most famous prose), in both English and Latin, and a work on Christian doctrine discovered in 1825. This corpus tells us what history by the victors and the reformed educational system would have looked like, had Cromwell's legacy not been to hang, posthumously, on the gibbet. It is, in short, a complete blueprint for a Puritan theocratic tyranny, run by Conservative-leaning Liberals rather than Tories of course.

But Milton's revision of Lily, being conservative, leaves most of it intact and puts it in all our libraries. To get an idea of how much he retained, 350 of 550 quotations are taken bodily from Lily. In other words, about 70% is retained. (to be continued)

So Many Scandals, So Little Time

There are so many scandals and 'Gates' in the last year I though I'd take a thread to review them all.  It is easy to confuse them two -- I count 26, and that's just in the US related to Clinton, Trump, and the Election.  I'm pretty sure that the US Public gets confused wheneer computers are mentioned -- which is one reason the Russians Haxor Us! story never dies.  It's got moar versions than there are Star Wars trilogies now.

By my count, first 4 scandals are 'ongoing' as we arrived in 2016...

01 Trump won't release his tax forms

02 Trump's business dealings with the Russians seem cozy, including his early campaign

These two didn't get a lot of traction, but they are there, and we needn't be partisan -- I don't think they've gone away either.

My motives aren't entirely pure -- I need these scandals to explain later ones. :D

03 wikileaks, snowden, and the guardian/intercept are Russian assets

This seems to be the settled opinion of the Intelligence Community, and they sure love to repeat it.  I'm not convinced -- there's another reading that has the CIA clipping the NSA's wing by running the Snowden operation themselves.  For one thing, very little of substance has ever been leaked, which is pretty suspicious of the Russians are trying to damage us.

I'm willing to entertain the idea, but what I'd like is some evidence that lets me *eliminate* one or the other hypothesis.  Confirming instances, in Science, are not as interesting as the hard to explain data.

04 alleged soft coup attempt 1 - includes Benghazi, Obama's BLM silence, silence about inauguration violence

This is the only scandal I'm going to put in the list that deals with Obama.  Clinton and Obama are alleged (by FBI Anon, Steele, and Pieczenik, and maybe Alex Jones) to have done a 'Soft Coup' on the US.  Exactly what that means has never been spelled out, but the allegations are always coupled with #PedoGate.  I'm pretty sure *this* scandal originates from our Intel Community, and it may have feet.

05 Comey's initial announcement, and FBIAnon

The thing with Loretta Lynch dropping the investigation into Emailgate (see below) was a scandal in and of itself.  Comey's handling was odd -- it is clear there was a problem there.  The first appearance of 'FBI Anon' is right after this sub-scandal.  It was to prove the gift that keeps on giving.

FBI Anon says whatever they found on the Benghazi server (see scandal #4) really shook the analysts up.

06 Guccifer 2.0 and the DNC Hacks

The early story about this was goofy.  Later on, it was shown that the leaked documents were modified within 30 minutes of creation.  Probably, an insider leaked them and invented the hacker backstory as cover.  it didn't work.

07 Hillary's Emailgate

Schindler was carping on this for ages too.  Clinton passed around GAMMA level info like it was an invitation to the golf club.  She had access to information she had no need to know, and held it in insecure places -- even the SCIF she allegedly had at home is (1) not where the server was kept and (2) probably not secure.  Then there's the 'pay for play' angle, which is treason.

08 Clinton Foundation Scandal

The darkest of them all.  'Nuff said.  I'm not sure the world really wants to know.

I once looked out my bedroom window at 3am and saw a bum picking through my weber grill, looking for meat to eat.  I asked him what he was up to.  'No good, Sir' was his reply -- indeed.

09 Clinton Gun Running

I'm surprised no one really cares.  Where there are guns, there are drugs and human trafficking, which people do care about though.  And who the Hell *did* we arm in the Middle East.  All roads do lead back to Benghazi.

10 #PizzaGate and Spirit Cooking

What a nasty view we got of our 'elites'.  I've always been a skeptic about the specifics of PizzaGate, and moast especially against the idea these sorts of thing will ever see the light of day.  Probably best to close the books on this one, and roll any findings that have traction over into...

11 #PedoGate

I take this to mean the stuff around Epstein, Weiner, blackmailing and leaking to the Mossad.  It involves members of Congress who will need to be arrested and tried.  There are plenty of small fry in the lower echelons in the process of being cleaned up.  Arrests will be in the 1000s if they aren't already.

12 PussyGate and #NeverTrump Cuckservative Revolt in October

It's clear this was the Bush family jewels leaked to help the McCain - Clinton - McMuffin love triangle at the last minute.  it didn't work but came close.

13 Comey's Last Minute Flip-Flopping

Remember this? Two weekends before the election he re-opens the case on an investigation of one of the candidates (Weiner's laptop and subordinates might have forced his hand, or the NYPD).  Then, under pressure, he backed off.  I still reserve judgment about whether he's a good guy or not.  He's had a very tough position to play, maybe even tougher than Trump's.  There's good reason to say he's just a Clinton loyalist shilling for them, but I'm not so sure.  He may have served the Republic in the best way he could, but it was a damn fine thing.

14 Debate Scandals

Nobody really cares but it is quite offensive -- the HQ candidate gets questions in advance (against Bernie, and maybe a teleprompter against Trump), kid glove treatment by judges, and reveals Nuclear secrets, committing treason live on the air in front of a national audience, without so much as a wrist slap.  Disgusting, and proof that our Democracy is the merest farce, and the MSM no moar then civil servants and not servants to the Public either.

15 Election Rigging - Bernie edition

This story really needs moar investigation, since there may have been hanky-panky with the machines in the Hillary/Bernie contest.  It's a good thing Kenya supervised our *national* election or we might have had trouble with that.

16 Russian alleged hacking of critical infrastructure, National Election

The rumour the Russians hacked our voating machines floated by the Obama administration was clear proof the Lawn Jockey in Chief was irresponsible and unworthy of his office.

I'm pretty sure there are Liberals who think this happened, and confuse it with all other mentions of 'computer' and 'Russian' in the same breath.

17 Last minute FBIVault Tweets

I lean towards the theory this was a software glitch, but I can't disprove the idea someone might have exploited the software to send a 'message' on a one time basis, around the time of Comey's late October surprise.

18 Weiner's Laptop and the non-Revolt by the NYPD

This one was odd.  Weiner's laptop is a scandal in its own right -- probably close to the 'big one' that is still out there.

19 Russian 'Electoral Interference' and the attempt at subserting the Electoral College - Soft Coup 2

People who like to say 'there was a soft coup' like to shift the goal poasts and turn scandal #4 (2011-2012) to scandal #19 (2016).  But it is true that the powers behind the Soft Coup did try a last minute Hail Mary pass with recounts, protests, and electoral college shenanigans, greatly harming both the democratic process and our Republic in the process.  *That* is the scandal -- it didn't work.

20 DNI Report on Russian Hacking

What a farce.  No one technical was convinced, and the quality of information so low the theory died and came back from the dead as a Vampire in other scandals.  It will probably never die -- or be able to tolerate sunlight.

21 The Trump Dossier and its leak

Schindler called it right -- it's raw HUMINT.  Analysis to make it real intelligence has led nowhere too.  The people behind it should have been warning enough for any analyst to run.

22 Flynn resignation, and revelation of his name as having been under investigation

Flynn resigned, and none of the reasons given have learned to extract oxygen from water, much less gotten legs and crawled on land into the sunlight.  Probably, he mentioned to the Russian ambassador that someone near Pence was involved in #PedoGate, and Pence wanted blood.  In any event, the real crime was the unknown 'leaker' who revealed the name of a government official under investigation -- that's a Federal crime, that is.

This sort of thing is as serious as it gets (as one article put it).  We are in Valerie Plame territory -- targeting government workers to add credibility to a false cover story that is coming apart.   We're not done with this one.

23 7th part of FBI Vault series on HRC Emailgate

We learned two important things:  the chain of custody of a server that 'civil servants' were inclined to pretend they didn't have, and the fact that the 'SCIF' in Clinton's residence was routinely un-monitored and invaded by non-cleared personnel who, uh, took out the trash.  Right.

24 Trumps tweets about Wiretapping Trump tower

These had better be true, as the charges are very serious.  I'm inclined to give it a few months to see if this information is actionable, rather than a political tactic hoping for the short news cycle to bury it.  I believe the allegations and I think they'll stick, but it will take time.

25 Wikileaks Vault7, release 1

A very limited quantity of information, but only 1% of the total.  Nothing we didn't really know, and I have some questions about how much 'massaging' of the data they do to -- both too much and not enough to prevent very serious damage to the CIA.  Not that I mind, in our current national mood.

I expect there to be some really nasty surprises in the other 99%, but people will get boared with the low pace of release.  This will, however, be bigger than Snowden.

26 Trump's Tax form release

What a fizzle.  But I don't think we've seen the end of this sort of thing.  It might have been an internal float to trace leaks and do spin control in advance.

Whew -- that was 26 scandals.  A whole alphabet's worth.  Wow.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Blackstone: Of Corporations

Because of its interest, this passage on corporations is thrown up for discussion. For many of the founding fathers and their countrymen, this would have been the full extent of their training and knowledge about the topic of corporations. I have done some light editing to make skipping over the footnotes and following the main text much easier on the eyes.


1. What are bodies politic, bodies corporate, or corporations; and for what purpose are they constituted?
2. What is the first division of corporations?
3. How are these incorporations again divided?
4. Of what two sorts are lay corporations?

5. What is absolutely necessary to the erection of a corporation?
6. In what sort of corporations is the King's implied consent to be found?
7. What are the two methods by which the King's express consent is given?
8. What is necessary to the very being of a corporation?
9. What are the five powers incident to all corporations?

10. What are those privileges and disabilities that attend aggregate corporations, and are not applicable to such as are sole?
11. May either kind of corporation take goods and chattels for the benefit of themselves and there successors?
12. Who have the right to give laws to ecclesiastical and eleemosynary foundations?
13. What acts can aggregate corporations, that have their constitution a head, do, during the vacancy of the headship?
14. In aggregate corporations, what determines the act of the whole body; and what is enacted by statue 33 Hen. VIII. c. 27, as to any private statues made by founders of corporations in derogation of the common law, in this particular?
15. How do the statutes of mortmain affect corporations?

16. What is the general duty of corporations?
17. How is this duty enforced?
18. Who is the visitor of ecclesiastical corporations?
19. Who is the visitor of lay corporations?
20. What does the law mean by the distinction of fundatio incipiens, and fundatio perficiens; and why is the King the visitor of all lay civil corporations, and the endower the visitor of all lay eleemosynary ones?
21. Where shall the King exercise this his jurisdiction?
22. May there not be another visitor of lay eleemosynary corporations than the founder?
23. What has been long held as to the visitation of hospitals, spiritual and lay; what does the statute 14 Eliz. c. 5. direct on the subject; and by whom are all the hospitals founded by statute 39 Eliz. c. 5. to be visited?

24. Are colleges lay or ecclesiastical corporations?
25. To whom do the lands and tenements of a corporation revert, upon its dissolution?
26. What becomes of the corporation's debts, upon its dissolution?
27. By what four methods may a corporation be dissolved?
28. What is an information in nature of a writ of quo warranto; and when may it be brought?
29. What is enacted as to the franchises of the city of London?
30. What is provided against the dissolution of corporations?



1. What are bodies politic, bodies corporate, or corporations; and for what purpose are they constituted?

WE have hitherto considered persons in their natural capacities, and have treated of their rights and duties. But, as all personal rights die with the person; and, as the necessary forms of investing a series of individuals, one after another, with the same identical rights, would be very inconvenient, if not impracticable, it has been found necessary, when it is for the advantage of the public to have any particular rights kept on foot and continued, to constitute artificial persons, who may maintain a perpetual succession, and enjoy a kind of legal immortality.

These artificial persons are called bodies politic, bodies corporate, (corpora corporata) or corporations: of which there is a great variety subsisting, for the advancement of religion, of learning, and of commerce; in order to preserve entire and for ever those rights and immunities, which, if they were granted only to those individuals of which the body corporate is composed, would upon their death be utterly lost and extinct. To shew the advantages of these incorporations, let us consider the case of a college in either of our universities, founded ad studendum et orandum, for the encouragement and support of religion and learning. If this were a mere voluntary assembly, the indivi-

[1. By the repeal of all British statutes, V. L. Edi. 1794, c. 147, it would seem that the law respecting corporations, in Virginia, stands upon the foundation of the common law, only; except as their powers are limited, or enlarged, by special acts of the general assembly.]

duals which compose it might indeed read, pray, study, and perform scholastic exercises together, so long as they could agree to do so: but they could neither frame, nor receive any laws or rules of their conduct; none at least, which would have any binding force, for want of a coercive power to create a sufficient obligation. Neither could they be capable of retaining any privileges or immunities: for, if such privileges be attacked, which of all this unconnected assembly has the right, or ability, to defend them? And, when they are dispersed by death or otherwise, how shall they transfer these advantages to another set of students, equally unconnected as themselves? So also, with regard to holding estates or other property, if land be granted for the purposes of religion or learning to twenty individuals not incorporated, there is no legal way of continuing the property to any other persons for the same purposes, but by endless conveyances from one to the other, as often as the hands are changed. But when they are consolidated and united into a corporation, they and their successors are then considered as one person in law: as one person, they have one will, which is collected from the sense of the majority of the individuals: this one will may establish rules and orders for the regulation of the whole, which are a sort of municipal laws of this little republic; or rules and statutes may be prescribed to it at it's creation, which are then in the place of natural laws: the privileges and immunities, the estates and possessions, of the corporation, when once vested in them, will be for ever vested, without any new conveyance to new successions;

for all the individual members that have existed from the foundation to the present time, or that shall ever hereafter exist, are but one person in law, a person that never dies: in like manner as the river Thames is still the same river, though the parts which compose it are changing every instant,

The honour of originally inventing these political constitutions entirely belongs to the Romans. They were introduced, as Plutarch says, by Numa; who finding, upon his accession, the city torn to pieces by the two rival factions of Sabines and Romans, thought it a prudent and politic measure to subdivide these two into many smaller ones, by instituting separate societies of every manual trade and profession. They were afterwards much

considered by the civil law,[a] in which they were called universitates, as forming one whole out of many individuals; or collegia, from being gathered together: they were adopted also by the canon law, for the maintenance of ecclesiastical discipline;

and from them our spiritual corporations are derived. But our laws have considerably refined and improved upon the invention, according to the usual genius of the English nation: particularly with regard to sole corporations, consisting of one person only, of which the Roman lawyers had no notion; their maxim being that "tres faciunt collegium.'' [b] Though they held, that if a corporation, originally consisting of three persons, be reduced to one, "si universitas ad unum redit," it may still subsist as a corporation, "et stet nomen universitatis."[ c]

2. What is the first division of corporations?

Before we proceed to treat of the several incidents of corporations, as regarded by the laws of England, let us first take a view of the several sorts of them; and then we shall be better enabled to apprehend their respective qualities.

The first division of corporations is into aggregate and sole. Corporations aggregate consist of many persons united together into one society, and are kept up by a perpetual succession of members, so as to continue for ever: of which kind are the mayor and commonalty of a city, the head and fellows of a college, the dean and chapter of a cathedral church. Corporations sole consist of one person only and his successors, in some particular station, who are incorporated by law, in order to give them some legal capacities and advantages, particularly that of perpetuity, which in their natural persons they could not have had. In this sense the king is a sole corporation:d so is a bishop: so are some deans, and prebendaries, distinct from their several chapters: and so is every parson and vicar. And the necessity, or at least use, of this institution will be very apparent, if we consider the case of a parson of a church. At the original endowment of parish churches, the freehold of the church, the church-yard, the parsonage house, the glebe, and the tithes

[a] Ff. l. 3. t. 4. per tot. c Ff. 3, 4. 7.

[b] Ff. 50, 16, 8. d Co. Litt. 43.

of the parish, were vested in the then parson by the bounty of the donor, as a temporal recompense to him for his spiritual care of the inhabitants, and with intent that the same emoluments should ever afterwards continue as a recompense for the same care. But how was this to be effected? The freehold was vested in the parson; and, if we suppose it vested in his natural capacity, on his death it might descend to his heir, and would be liable to his debts and incumbrances: or, at best, the heir might be compellable, at some trouble and expense, to convey these rights to the succeeding incumbent. The law, therefore, has wisely ordained, that the parson, quatenus parson, shall never die, any more than the king; by making him and his successors a corporation. By which means all the original rights of the parsonage are preserved entire to the successor: for the present incumbent, and his predecessor who lived seven centuries ago, are in law one and the same person; and what was given to the one was given to the other also.

3. How are these incorporations again divided?
4. Of what two sorts are lay corporations?

Another division of incorporations, either sole or aggregate, is into ecclesiastical and lay. Ecclesiastical corporations are where the members that compose it are entirely spiritual persons; such as bishops; certain deans, and prebendaries; all archdeacons, parsons, and vicars; which are sole corporations: deans and chapters at present, and formerly prior and convent, abbot and monks, and the like, bodies aggregate. These are erected for the furtherance of religion, and perpetuating the rights of the church. Lay corporations are of two sorts, civil and eleemosynary. The civil are such as are erected for a variety of temporal purposes. The king, for instance, is made a corporation to prevent in general the possibility of an interregnum or vacancy of the throne, and to preserve the possessions of the crown entire;

for, immediately upon the demise of one king, his successor is, as we have formerly seen, in full possession of the regal rights and dignity. Other lay corporations are erected for the good government of a town or particular district, as a mayor and commonalty, bailiff and burgesses, or the like: some for the advancement and regulation of manufactures and commerce; as the trading companies of London, and other towns: and some for the

better carrying on of divers special purposes; as churchwardens, for conservation of the goods of the parish; the college of physicians and company of surgeons in London, for the improvement of the medical science; the royal society, for the advancement of natural knowledge; and the society of antiquaries, for promoting the study of antiquities. And among these I am inclined to think the general corporate bodies of the universities of Oxford and Cambridge must be ranked: for it is clear they are not spiritual or ecclesiastical corporations, being composed of more laymen than clergy: neither are they eleemosynary foundations, though stipends are annexed to particular magistrates and professors, any more than other corporations where the acting officers have standing salaries; for these are rewards pro opera et labore, not charitable donations only, since every Stipend is preceded by service and duty: they seem, therefore, to be merely civil corporations. The eleemosynary sort are such as are constituted for the perpetual distribution of the free alms, or bounty, of the founder of them to such persons as he has directed. Of this kind are all hospitals for the maintenance of the poor, sick, and impotent; and all colleges, both in our universities and out [e] of them: which colleges, are founded for two purposes; 1. For the promotion of piety and learning by proper regulations and ordinances. 2. For imparting assistance to the members of those bodies, in order to enable them to prosecute their devotion and studies with greater ease and assiduity. And all these eleemosynary corporations are, strictly speaking, lay and not ecclesiastical, even though composed of ecclesiastical persons,f and although they in some things partake of the nature, privileges and restrictions of ecclesiastical bodies.

Having thus marshalled the several species of corporations, let us next proceed to consider, 1. How corporations, in general, may be created. 2. What are their powers, capacities, and incapacities. 3. How corporations are visited. And 4. How they may be dissolved.

I. Corporations, by the civil law, seem to have been created by the mere act, and voluntary association of their members; pro-

[e Such as at Manchester, Eton, Winchester, &c.] [f 1 Lord Raym. 6.]

vided such convention was not contrary to law, for then it was illicitum collegium.[g] It does not appear that the prince's consent was necessary to be actually given to the foundation of them;

but merely that the original founders of these voluntary and friendly societies (for they were little more than such) should not establish any meetings in opposition to the laws of the state.

But, with us in England, the king's consent is absolutely necessary to the erection of any corporation, either impliedly or expressly given.[h] The king's implied consent is to be found in corporations which exist by force of the common law, to which our former kings are supposed to have given their concurrence;[2] common law being nothing else but custom, arising from the universal agreement of the whole community. Of this sort are the king himself, all bishops, parsons, vicars, churchwardens, and some others; who by common law have ever been held (as far as our books can shew us) to have been corporations, virtute officii: and this incorporation is so inseparably annexed to their offices, that we cannot frame a complete legal idea, of any of these persons, but we must also have an idea of a corporation, capable to transmit his rights to his successors, at the same time. Another method of implication, whereby the king's consent is presumed, is as to all corporations by prescrip

[g Ff. 47, 22, 1. Neque societas, neque collegium, neque hujusmodi corpus passim omnibus habere conceditur; nam et legibus, et senatus consultus, et principalibus constitutionibus, ea res coercetur. Ff. 3, 4, 1.]

[h Cities and towns were first erected into corporate communities on the continent, and endowed with many valuable privileges, about the eleventh century: (Roberts. Cha. V. i. 30.) to which the consent of the feodal sovereign was absolutely necessary, as many of his prerogatives and revenues were thereby considerably diminished.]

[2. No corporation hath been created in Virginia, since the revolution but by an act of the legislature. Their several powers and privileges must therefore depend wholly upon the acts of assembly by which they were first established, or such as have been afterwards made for the special purpose of limiting or enlarging, their privileges, respectively.]

tion, such as the city of London, and many others j which have existed as corporations, time whereof the memory of man runneth not to the contrary; and therefore are looked upon in law to be well created. For though the members thereof can shew no legal charter of incorporation, yet in cases of such high antiquity the law presumes there once was one; and that by the variety of accidents, which a length of time may produce, the charter is lost or destroyed. The methods by which the king's consent is expressly given, are either by act of parliament, or charter. By act of parliament, of which the royal assent is a necessary ingredient, corporations may undoubtedly be created;[i]

but it is observable, that (till of late years) most of those statutes, which are usually cited as having created corporations, do either confirm such as have been before created by the king; as in the case of the college of physicians erected by charter 10 Hen. VIII;[k] which charter was afterwards confirmed in parliament;[l]

or, they permit the king to erect a corporation in futuro with such and such powers; as is the case of the bank of England,[m] and the society of the British fishery.[n] So that the immediate creative act was usually performed by the king alone, in virtue of his royal prerogative.[o]

All the other methods therefore whereby corporations exist, by common law, by prescription, and by act of parliament, are for the most part reducible to this of the king's letters patent, or charter of incorporation. The king's creation may be performed by the words "creamus, erigimus, fundamus, incorporamus," or the like. Nay it is held, that if the king grants to a set of men to have gildam mercatoriam, a mercantile meeting or assembly,[p]

[j 2 Inst. 330.]

[k 8 Rep. 114.]

[m Stat. 5 & 6 W. & M. c. 20.]

[o See page 272.]

[i 10 Rep. 29. 1 Roll. Abr. 512. l 14 & 15 Hen. VIII, c. 5.] [n Stat. 23 Geo. II, c. 4.]

[p Gild signified among the Saxons a fraternity, derived from the verb gildan to pay, because every man paid his share towards the expenses of the community. And hence their place of meeting is frequently called the Guild or Guild hall.]

this is alone sufficient to incorporate and establish them for ever.[q]

The parliament, we observed, by its absolute and transcendent authority, may perform this, or any other act whatsoever:

and actually did perform it to a great extent, by statute 39 Eliz. c. 5, which incorporated all hospitals and houses of correction founded by charitable persons, without farther trouble: and the same has been done in other cases of charitable foundations. But otherwise it has not formerly been usual thus to intrench upon the prerogative of the crown, and the king may prevent it if he pleases. And, in the particular instance before-mentioned, it was done, as sir Edward Coke observes,[r] to avoid the charges of incorporation and licences of mortmain in small benefactions;

which in his days were grown so great, that they discouraged many men from undertaking these pious and charitable works.

The king (it is said) may grant to a subject the power of erecting corporations,[8] though the contrary was formerly held: [t]

that is, he may permit the subject to name the persons and powers of the corporation at his pleasure; but it is really the king that erects, and the subjects is but the instrument: for though none but the king can make a corporation, yet qui facit per alium, facit per se.[u] In this manner the chancellor of the university of Oxford has power by charter to erect corporations; and has actually often exerted it, in the erection of several matriculated companies, now subsisting, of tradesmen subservient to the students.

When a corporation is erected, a name must be given to it;

and by that name alone it must sue, and be sued, and do all legal acts; though a very minute variation therein is not material.[uu] Such name is the very being of it's constitution; and, though

[q 10 Rep. 30. 1 Roll. Abr. 513.] [r 2 Inst. 722.] [s Bro. Abr. tit. Prerog. 53. Viner. Prerog. 88. pl. 16.] [t Yearbook, 2 Hen. VIII, 13.] [u 10 Rep. 33.] [uu 10 Rep. 122.]

it is the will of the king that erects the corporation, yet the name is the knot of it's combination, without which it could not perform it's corporate functions.[w] The name of incorporation, says sir Edward Coke, is as a proper name or name of baptism;

and therefore when a private founder gives his college or hospital a name, he does it only as a godfather; and by that same name the king baptizes the incorporation.[x]

II. After a corporation is so formed and named, it acquires many powers, rights, capacities, and incapacities, which we are next to consider. Some of these are necessarily and inseparably incident to every corporation; which incidents, as soon as a corporation is duly erected, are tacitly annexed of course.y As, 1. To have perpetual succession. This is the very end of it's incorporation: for there cannot be a succession for ever without an incorporation: [z] and, therefore, all aggregate corporations have a power necessarily implied of electing members in the room of such as go off.[a] 2. To sue or be sued, implead or be impleaded, grant or receive, by it's corporate name, and do all other acts as natural persons may. 3. To purchase lands, and hold them, for the benefit of themselves and their successors; which two are consequential to the former. 4. To have a common seal. For a corporation, being an invisible body, cannot manifest it's intentions by any personal act or oral discourse: it therefore acts and speaks only by it's common seal. For, though the particular members may express their private consents to any act, by words, or signing their names, yet this does not bind the corporation:

it is the fixing of the seal, and that only, which unites the several assents of the individuals, who compose the community, and makes one joint assent of the whole.[b] 5. To make by-laws or private statutes for the better government of the corporation; which are binding upon themselves, unless contrary to the laws of the land, and then they are void. This is also included by law in the very act of incorporation; [c] for, as natural reason is given to the natural body for the governing it, so by-laws or sta

[w Gilb. Hist. C. P. 182.] [y Ibid. 30, Hob. 211.] [a 1 Roll. Abr. 514.] [c Hob. 211.]

[x 10 Rep. 28.] [z 10 Rep. 26.] [b Dav. 44, 48.]

tutes are a sort of political reason to govern the body politic. And this right of making by-laws for their own government, not contrary to the law of the land, was allowed by the law of the twelve tables at Rome.[d] But no trading company is, with us, allowed to make by-laws, which may affect the king's prerogative, or the common profit of the people, under penalty of 40l. unless they be approved by the chancellor, treasurer, and chief justices, or the judges of assise in their circuits: and even, though they be so approved, still, if contrary to law, they are void.[e] These five powers are inseparably incident to every corporation, at least to every corporation aggregate: for two of them, though they may be practised, yet are very unnecessary to a corporation sole, viz. to have a corporate seal to testify his sole assent, and to make statutes for the regulation of his own conduct.

There are also certain privileges and disabilities that attend an aggregate corporation, and are not applicable to such as are sole; the reason of them ceasing, and of course the law. It must always appear by attorney; for it cannot appear in person, being, as sir Edward Coke says, [f ]invisible, and existing only in intendment and consideration of law. It can neither maintain, or be made defendant to, an action of battery or such like personal injuries: for a corporation can neither beat, nor be beaten, in it's body politic.[g] A corporation cannot commit treason, or felony, or other crime, in it's corporate capacity; [h] though it's other members may, in their distinct individual capacities.[i] Neither is it capable of suffering a traitor's or felon's punishment, for it is not liable to corporate penalties, nor to attainder, forfeiture, or corruption of blood. It cannot be executor or administrator, or perform any personal duties; for it cannot take an

[d Sodales legem quam volent; dum ne quid ex publica lege corrumpant, sibi ferunto.]

[e Stat. 19 Hen. VII, c. 7. 11 Rep. 54.]

[f 10 Rep. 32.]

[g Bro. Abr. tit. Corporation. 60.]

[h 10 Rep. 32.]

[i The civil law also ordains that, for the misbehaviour of a body corporate, the directors only shall be answerable in their personal capacities. Ff. 4, 3, 15.]

oath for the due execution of the office. It cannot be seised of lands to the use of another;[j] for such kind of confidence is foreign to the end of it's institution. Neither can it be committed to prison; [k] for it's existence being ideal, no man can apprehend or arrest it. And, therefore, also it cannot be outlawed;

for outlawry always supposes a precedent right of arresting, which has been defeated by the parties absconding, and that also a corporation cannot do: for which reasons the proceedings to compel a corporation to appear to any suit by attorney, are always by distress on their lands and goods.[l] Neither can a corporation be excommunicated; for it has no soul, as is gravely observed by sir Edward Coke: [m] and, therefore, also it is not liable to be summoned into the ecclesiastical courts upon any account; for those courts act only pro salute animae, and their sentences can only be inforced by spiritual censures: a consideration, which carried to it's full extent, would alone demonstrate the impropriety of these courts interfering in any temporal rights whatsoever.

There are also other incidents and powers, which belong to some sort of corporations, and not to others. An aggregate corporation may take goods and chattels for the benefit of themselves and their successors, but a sole corporation cannot: [n] for such moveable property is liable to be lost or imbezzled, and would raise a multitude of disputes between the successor and executor; which the law is careful to avoid. In ecclesiastical and eleemosynary foundations, the king or the founder may give them rules, laws, statutes, and ordinances, which they are bound to observe: but corporations merely lay, constituted for civil purposes, are subject to no particular statutes; but to the common law, and to their own by-laws, not contrary to the laws of the realm.[o] Aggregate corporations also, that have by their constitution a head, as a dean, warden, master, or the like, can

[j Bro. Abr. tit. Feoffm, al use. 40. Bacon of Uses, 347.]

[k Plowd. 538.]

[l Bro. Abr. tit. Corporation. 11. Outlawry, 72.]

[m 10 Rep. 32. n Co. Litt. 46.]

[o Lord Raym. 8.]

not do any acts during the vacancy of the headship, except only appointing another: neither are they then capable of receiving a grant; for such corporation is incomplete without a head.[p] But there may be a corporation aggregate constituted without a head 1: as the collegiate church of Southwell in Nottinghamshire, which consists only of prebendaries; and the governors of the charter-house, London, who have no president or superior, but are all of equal authority. In aggregate corporations also, the act of the major part is esteemed the act of the whole. [r] By the civil law this major part must have consisted of two-thirds of the whole; else no act could be performed: 8 which, perhaps, may be one reason why they required three at least to make a corporation. But, with us, any majority is sufficient to determine the act of the whole body. And whereas, notwithstanding the law stood thus, some founders of corporations had made statutes in derogation of the common law, making very frequently the unanimous assent of the society to be necessary to any corporate act:

(which king Henry VIII found to be a great obstruction to his projected scheme of obtaining a surrender of the lands of ecclesiastical corporations) it was therefore enacted by statute 33 Hen. VIII. c. 27, that all private statutes shall be utterly void, whereby any grant or election, made by the head, with the concurrence of the major part of the body, is liable to be obstructed by any one or more, being the minority: but this statute extends not to any negative or necessary voice, given by the founder to the head of any such society. [2]

We before observed that it was incident to every corporation, to have a capacity to purchase lands for themselves and successors; and this is regularly true at the common law.[t ]But they are excepted out of the statute of wills; [u] [3] so that no devise of

[p Co. Litt. 263, 264.]

[r Bro. Abr. tit. Corporation, 31, 34.]

[t 10 Rep. 30.]

[q 10 Rep. 30. s Ff. 3, 4, 3. u 34 Hen. VIII, c. 5.]

[(2) This statute is not in force in Virginia. L. V. 1794, c. 147.]

[3. Corporations are not excepted out of the statute of wills in Virginia, nor do they appear ever to have been so excepted. See V. L. 1748, c. 3. 1785, c. 61. 1794, c. 92.]

lands to a corporation by will is good; except for charitable uses, by statute 43 Eliz. c. 4: [w] which exception is again greatly narrowed by the statute 9 Geo. II. c. 36. And also, by a great variety of statutes,[x] their privilege even of purchasing from any living grantor is much abridged; so that now a corporation, either ecclesiastical or lay, must have a licence from the king to purchase: [y] before they can exert that capacity which is vested in them by the common law; nor is even this in all cases sufficient. These statutes are generally called the statutes of mortmain; all purchases made by corporate bodies being said to be purchases in mortmain, in mortua manu: for the reason of which appellation sir Edward Coke [z] offers many conjectures; but there is one which seems more probable than any that he has given us; viz. that these purchases being usually made by ecclesiastical bodies, the members of which (being professed) were reckoned dead persons in law, land therefore, holden by them, might with great propriety be said to be held in mortua manu.

I shall defer the more particular exposition of these statutes of mortmain till the next book of these commentaries, when we shall consider the nature and tenures of estates; and also the exposition of those disabling statutes of queen Elizabeth, which restrain spiritual and eleemosynary corporations from aliening such lands as they are at present in legal possession of; only mentioning them in this place, for the sake of regularity, as statutable incapacities incident and relative to corporations. [4]

The general duties of all bodies politic, considered in their corporate capacity, may, like those of natural persons, be re-

[w Hob. 136.]

[x From magna carta, 9 Hen. III, c. 36, to 9 Geo. II, c. 36.] [y By the civil law, a corporation was incapable of taking lands, unless by special privilege from the emperor: collegium, si nullo speciali privilegio subnixum sit, haereditatem capere non posse, dubium, non est. Cod. 6, 24, 8.] [z 1 Inst. 2.]

[4. These statutes were all repealed in 1792. V. L. Edi. 1794, C. 147.]

duced to this single one; that of acting up to the end or design, whatever it be, for which they were created by their founder.

III. I proceed therefore next to inquire, how these corporations may be visited. For corporations being composed of individuals, subject to human frailties, are liable, as well as private persons, to deviate from the end of their institution. And, for that reason, the law has provided proper persons to visit, inquire into, and correct all irregularities that arise in such corporations, either sole or aggregate, and whether ecclesiastical, civil, or eleemosynary. With regard to all ecclesiastical corporations, the ordinary is their visitor, so constituted by the canon law, and from thence derived to us. The pope formerly, and now the king, as supreme ordinary, is the visitor of the archbishop or metropolitan; the metropolitan has the charge and coercion of all his suffragan bishops; and the bishops, in their several dioceses, are in ecclesiastical matters the visitors of all deans and chapters, of all parsons and vicars, of all other spiritual corporations. With respect to all lay corporations, the founder, his heirs, or assigns, are the visitors, whether the foundation be civil or eleemosynary; for in a lay incorporation the ordinary neither can nor ought to visit.a

I know it is generally said, that civil corporations are subject to no visitation, but merely to the common law of the land; and this shall be presently explained. But first, as I have laid it down as a rule that the founder, his heirs, or assigns, are the visitors of all lay corporations, let us inquire what is meant by the founder. The founder of all corporations in the strictest and original sense is the king alone, for he only can incorporate a society; and in civil incorporations, such as mayor and commonalty, &c. where there are no possessions or endowments given to the body, there is no other founder hut the king: but in eleemosynary foundations, such as colleges and hospitals, where there is an endowment of lands, the law distinguishes, and makes two species of foundation; the one fundatio incipiens, or the incorporation, in which sense the king is the general foun

[a 10 Rep. 31.]

der of all colleges and hospitals; the other fundatio perficiens, or the dotation of it, in which sense the first gift of the revenues is the foundation, and he who gives them is in law the founder: and it is in this last sense that we generally call a man the founder of a college or hospital.b But here the king has his prerogative:

for, if the king and a private man join in endowing an eleemosynary foundation, the king alone shall be the founder of it. And, in general, the king being the sole founder of all civil corporations, and the endower the perficient founder of all eleemosynary ones, the right of visitation of the former results, according to the rule laid down, to the king; and of the latter to the patron or endower.

The king being thus constituted by law visitor of all civil corporations, the law has also appointed the place, wherein he shall exercise this jurisdiction: which is the court of king's bench;

where, and where only, all misbehaviours of this kind of corporations are enquired into and redressed, and all their controversies decided. And this is what I understand to be the meaning of our lawyers, when they say that these civil corporations are liable to no visitation; that is, that the law having by immemorial usage appointed them to be visited and inspected by the king their founder, in his majesty's court of king's bench, according to the rules of the common law, they ought not to be visited elsewhere, or by any other authority.c And this is so strictly true, that though the king by his letters patent had subjected the college of physicians to the visitation of four very respectable persons, the lord chancellor, the two chief justices, and the chief baron; though the college had accepted this charter with all possible marks of acquiescence, and had acted under it for near a century; yet in 1753, the authority of this provision coming into dispute, on an appeal preferred to these supposed

[b 10 Rep. 33.]

[c This notion is perhaps too refined. The court of king's bench, (it may be said) from it's general superintendent authority where other jurisdictions are deficient, has power to regulate all corporations where no special visitor is appointed. But not in the light of visitor; for, as it's judgments are liable to he reversed by writs of error, it may be thought to want one of the essential marks of visitatorial power.]

visitors, they directed the legality of their own appointment to be argued: and as this college was merely a civil and not an eleemosynary foundation, they at length determined, upon several days solemn debate, that they had no jurisdiction as visitors;

and remitted the appellant (if aggrieved) to his regular remedy in his majesty's court of king's bench.

As to eleemosynary corporations, by the dotation the founder and his heirs are of common right the legal visitors, to see that such property is rightly employed, as might otherwise have descended to the visitor himself: but if the founder has appointed and assigned any other person to be visitor, then his assignee so appointed is vested with all the founder's power, in exclusion of his heir. Eleemosynary corporations are chiefly hospitals, or colleges in the universities. These were all of them considered, by the popish clergy, as of mere ecclesiastical jurisdiction: however, the law of the land judged otherwise; and, with regard to hospitals, it has long been held,d that if the hospital be spiritual, the bishop shall visit; but if lay, the patron. This right of lay patrons was indeed abridged by statute 2 Hen. V. c. 1, which ordained, that the ordinary should visit all hospitals founded by subjects; though the king's right was reserved, to visit by his commissioners such as were of royal foundation. But the subject's right was in part restored by statute 14 Eliz. c. 5. which directs the bishop to visit such hospitals only, where no visitor is appointed by the founders thereof: and all the hospitals founded by virtue of the statute 39 Eliz. c. 5, are to be visited by such persons as shall be nominated by the respective founders. But still, if the founder appoints nobody, the bishop of the diocese must visit.e

Colleges in the universities (whatever the common law may now, or might formerly, judge) were certainly considered by the popish clergy, under whose direction they were, as ecclesiastical, or at least, as clerical, corporations; and therefore the right of visitation was claimed by the ordinary of the diocese. This is evident, because in many of our most antient colleges, where

[d Yearbook, 8 Edw. III, 28. 8 Ass. 29.] [e 2 Inst, 725.]

the founder had a mind to subject them to a visitor of his own nomination, he obtained for that purpose a papal bulle to exempt them from the jurisdiction of the ordinary; several of which are still preserved in the archives of the respective societies. And in some of our colleges, where no special visitor is appointed, the bishop of that diocese, in which Oxford was formerly comprised, has immemorially exercised visitatorial authority; which can be ascribed to nothing else, but his supposed title as ordinary to visit this, among other ecclesiastical foundations. And it is not impossible, that the number of colleges in Cambridge, which are visited by the bishop of Ely, may in part be derived from

the same original.

But, whatever might be formerly the opinion of the clergy, it is now held as established common law, that colleges are lay corporations, though sometimes totally composed of ecclesiastical persons; and that the right of visitation does not arise from any principles of the cannon law, but of necessity was created by the common law.f And yet the power and jurisdiction of visitors in colleges was left so much in the dark at common law, that the whole doctrine was very unsettled till the famous case of Phillips and Bury.[g] In this the main question was, whether the sentence of the bishop of Exeter, who (as visitor) had deprived doctor Bury the rector of Exeter College, could be examined and redressed by the court of king's bench. And the three puisne judges were of opinion, that it might be reviewed, for that the visitor's jurisdiction could not exclude the common law, and accordingly judgment was given in that court. But the lord chief justice Holt was of a contrary opinion; and held, that by the common law the office of visitor is to judge according to the statutes of the college, and to expel and deprive upon just occasions, and to hear all appeals of course: and that from him, and him only, the party grieved ought to have redress: the founder having reposed in him so entire a confidence, that he will administer justice impartially, that his determinations are final, and examinable in no other

[f Lord Raym. 8.]

[g Lord Raym. 5. 4 Mod. 106. Show. 35. Skinn. 407. Salk. 403, Carthew. 180.]

court whatsoever. And, upon this, a writ of error being brought into the house of lords, they concurred in sir John Holt's opinion, and reversed the judgment of the court of king's bench. To which leading case all subsequent determinations have been conformable. But, where the visitor is under a temporary disability, there the court of king's bench will interpose, to prevent a defect of justice. [h] Also it is said,i that if a founder of an eleemosynary foundation appoints a visitor, and limits his jurisdiction by rules and statutes, if the visitor in his sentence exceeds those rules, an action lies against him; but it is otherwise, where he mistakes in a thing within his power.[5]

IV. We come now, in the last place, to consider how corporations may be dissolved. Any particular member may be

[h Stra. 797. i 2 Lutw. 1566.]

[5. In October 1787, Mr. Bracken, formerly, professor of humanity in the college of William and Mary, whose office had been discontinued by the visitors of the college, in the year 1779, applied to the general court for a mandamus to restore him to his office; the case was adjourned into the court of appeals for difficulty;]

it was argued at two terms successively, and in November, 1790, the mandamus was denied on the merits: which (according to the president of the court of appeals) was inserted for two purposes. First, to shew the case had been fully entered into, as if the papers had been before the court on the return of the mandamus. Secondly, to meet an obligation warmly insisted upon, that the general court had no power to intermeddle with the affairs of the college, upon the English precedents, applying to private donations for colleges; but which some of the judges, at least, (of whom he was one) thought did not apply to our college, which had a public, and not a private foundation.

The right of the visitors to change the arrangements of schools, made by the original statutes, and to discontinue the grammar school, was considered by the court as unquestionable. And in a suit against the college for his salary as master of the grammar school, from the period that such arrangement was made, by statute, the whole of the case being found at large in a special verdict, judgment was rendered first in the district court, and finally in the court of appeals in favour of the college. 1 Call's Reports, 164.

disfranchised, or lose his place in the corporation, by acting contrary to the laws of the society, or the laws of the land: or he may resign it by his own voluntary act.[k] But the body politic may also itself be dissolved in several ways; which dissolution is the civil death of the corporation: and in this case their lands and tenements shall revert to the person, or his heirs, who granted them to the corporation: for the law doth annex a condition to every such grant, that if the corporation be dissolved, the grantor shall have the lands again, because the cause of the grant faileth.[l] The grant is indeed only during the life of the corporation; which may endure for ever: but, when that life is determined by the dissolution of the body politic, the grantor takes it back by reversion, as in the case of every other grant for life. The debts of a corporation, either to or from it, are totally extinguished by it's dissolution; so that the members thereof cannot recover, or be charged with them, in their natural capacities: m agreeable to that maxim of the civil law,[n] "si quid universitati debetur, singulis non debetur; nec, quod debet universitas, singuli debent."

A corporation may be dissolved, 1. By act of parliament, which is boundless in it's operations. 2. By the natural death of all it's members, in case of an aggregate corporation. 3. By surrendering of it's franchises into the hands of the king, which is a kind of suicide. 4. By forfeiture of it's charter, through negligence or abuse of it's franchises; in which case the law judges that the body politic has broken the condition upon which it was incorporated, and thereupon the corporation is void. And the regular course is to bring an information in nature of a writ of quo warranto, to inquire by what warrant the members now exercise their corporate power, having forfeited it by such and such proceedings. The exertion of this act of law, for the purposes of the state, in the reigns of king Charles and king James the second, particularly by seising the charter of the city of London, gave great and just offence; though perhaps, in strictness of law, the proceedings in most of them were suffici-

[k 11 Rep. 98. m 1 Lev. 237.]

[1 Co. Litt. 13. n Ff. 3, 4, 7.]

ently regular: but the judgment against that of London was reversed by act of parliament o after the revolution; and by the same statute it is enacted, that the franchises of the city of London shall never more be forfeited for any cause whatsoever. And, because by the common law corporations were dissolved, in case the mayor or head officer was not duly elected on the day appointed in the charter established by prescription, it is now provided,[p] that for the future no corporation shall be dissolved upon that account; and ample directions are given for appointing a new officer, in case there be no election, or a void one, made upon the prescriptive or charter day.

[o Stat. 2 W. and M. c. 8.] [p Stat. 11 Geo. I, c. 4.]

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Blackstone: Of the Nature of Law in General

Week 3 Reading:


1. What is law, in its most general and comprehensive sense?

2. What is law, in its more confined sense, and that in which it is the present commentator's business to consider it?

3. What is the law of Nature?

4. To what one precept, may the law of nature be reduced?


5. Has God revealed any portions of this law to us?

6. Upon what two foundations depend all human laws?

7. As the whole race of mankind form separate states, is there not a third kind of law?

8. What is that law called, by which particular nations are governed?

9. How does the commentator define that law?


10. What three forms of government are there?

11. What peculiar quality does each of these forms of government possess; and what effect have these several qualities upon the laws of their respective governments?

12. What is the nature of the British form of government?

13. With whom lies the right to make laws, in every government?


14. Of what four parts may every law be said to consist?

15. Wherein lies the difference between those things prohibited by the law, which are mala in se, and those which are mala prohibita?


16. What five helps are there to the interpretation of laws?

17. How is equity defined by Grotius?
Blackstone: Of the Laws of England

Reading for week two:


1. Into what two kinds may the municipal law of England be divided?

2. What does the first of these kinds of law include?

3. Where is it to be found?

4. Of what degree of antiquity must its maxims and customs be, to entitle them to validity?

5. Into what three kinds is it distinguishable?

6. How are its customs or maxims to be known; and by whom is there validity to be determined?

7. What is the doctrine of the law, as to following precedents?


8. What three things do the rules relating to particular customs regard?

9. Wherein do the customs of London differ from all others in point of trial?

10. What are the seven necessary requisites to make a custom good?

11. To what, however, must all special customs submit?

12. What are understood by those peculiar laws, which, by custom, are adopted and used only in certain peculiar courts, and jurisdictions?

13. What is understood by each of these laws, absolutely taken?


14. What are the four species of courts, in which these laws are permitted to be used?

15. Under what superintendency, are all these courts?

16. To whom does an appeal from them lie, in the last resort?


17. Of what does the second kind of municipal law consist?

18. Into what four kinds is it distinguishable?

19. What two connexions has it with the first kind of municipal law?

20. What are the ten principal rules to be observed with regard to the construction of the second kind of municipal law?


21. For what purpose are our courts of equity established; and in what matters only are they conversant?
Blackstone: Geography and Laws of the British Isles

Reading for this week:


1. What does the kingdom of England, by the common law, include?

2. How is Wales governed; and in what particulars does it differ from
the kingdom of England?

3. How is Scotland governed; and what four observations are to be made
upon the articles and act of union between England and Scotland?

4. How is the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed governed; what
writs run there; and by whom may all local matters arising there be


5. How is Ireland governed? And see Mr. Justice Christian's note (14)
to this chapter.

6. How are the Isles of Wight, Portland, Thanet, &c. governed?

7. How is the Isle of Man governed?

8. How are the Isles of Jersey, Guernsey, Sark, Alderney, and their
appendages, governed?

9. How are our Plantations abroad governed?

10. Of what three sorts are our Colonies, with respect to their internal
polity; what is the form of government in most of them; and what is
declared, as to the laws of plantations, by statue 7 & 8 W. III.
c.22, and as to the subordination of the American Plantations, by statue
6 Geo. III. c. 12?


11. But what was the King empowered to do by statute 22 Geo. III. c. 46;
and what does he acknowledge by the first article of the definitive
treaty of peace and friendship between His Britannic Majesty
and the United States of America? To be answered from Mr. Justice
Christian's note (17) to this chapter.

12. How are any foreign dominions, which may belong to the King
by hereditary descent, by purchase, or other acquisition,

13. What part of the sea is subject to the common law, and what
part to the jurisdiction of our Courts of Admiralty?


14. To what two divisions is the territory of England liable?

15. How is the first division subdivided?

16. What is a parish; how were the boundaries of parishes
originally ascertained: how is the intermixture of parishes one with
another to be accounted for; how are some lands extraparochial; to whom
are their tithes payable; yet what does the statute 17 Geo. II. c. 37 enact as
to extra-parochial waste and marsh lands, when improved and

17. How is the second division subdivided?

18. What is tithing?


19. What is a town now, what a city, and what a borough?

20. What is a hundred, what a wapentake, what a county or
shire, what a lathe, what a rape, and what a

21. What is a county-palatine; what three counties are now of
this nature; whence is the origin of their privileges; how were the powers of
their owners abridged in 27 Henry VIII; and who are those owners now?

22. What is the Isle of Ely?

23. What is a county-corporate?
Tucker's Blackstone Study Group

We will be reading and discussing, over the next 2-3 years, the volumes of Blackstone's Commentary as revised for use in Virginia by Tucker (1803 edition). All texts will be available online. We will follow, to direct the discussion, the study questions of Barron Field, An Analysis of Blackstone's Commentaries On the Laws of England (1822), which does not exactly follow
Tucker, but should be close enough. We will cover about one chapter per week, and each chapter has about 20 study questions. I will try to post these week in advance, but please do not answer past the next day (with free discussion on any topic of interest for weekends). The advance posting is to permit those who need to schedule their time some advance warning.

At the appropriate time, we will discussion the U.S. Articles of Confederation, Constitution, Federalist papers, and similar topics -- how much of a sidebar is not yet determined. We may start a second discussion group at that point.

In addition, the following texts will be subject to discussion, with appropriate passages highlighted at the appropriate time:-- so really you can drop in at any point, read the questions, follow the links, and go for it.

Required Texts:

Tucker's Blackstone (1803), Commentaries on the Laws of England

James Wilson, Lectures on Law

Zane, Story of Law

Zane, Five Ages of the Bench and Bar of England

Coulbourn, Lamp of Experience

Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia (2 parts)

Grotius, On the Laws of War and Peace


SP Scott, Roman Law, preface and extracts
in the Liberty Library:

Benjamin D'Ooge, Cicero Select Orations

sections on the Roman Antiquities, Roman magistracy
and constitution under the Republic in the introduction

Filmer, Patriarchia
Locke, 1st and 2nd Treatise of Government

Beverly, History of Virginia, in Four Parts
Bolingbroke, various writings
Blackstone, Analysis of the Law
Hume, History of England

State papers of the United States
Federalist Papers
Anti-Federalist Papers
Calhoun, Disquisitions etc.

Harold Laski, Studies in the Problem of Sovereignty

Book I, Part First, 'Of the Study, Nature, and Extent of the Laws

Section 1 Of the Study of the Law

Week 3- Section 2 Of the Nature of Laws in General
Start Wilson (9 chapters)

Week 2- Section 3 Of the Laws of England
Week 1- Section 4 Of the Countries Subject to the Laws of England


A - Of Sovereignty and Legislature
B - Of the several Forms of Government
C - Of the Constitution of Virginia
D - Of the Constitution of the United States
E - Of the Unwritten, or Common Law, of England; and its introduction
into, and authority within, the United American States
F - Of the Lex Scripta; or Written Law, of Virginia

Vol II - Book 1st, part 2nd, Of the Rights of persons

Vol III - Book 2nd, part 2nd, Of the Rights of Things
Vol IV - Book 3rd, of Private Wrongs - 27 chapters
Vol V - Book 4th of Public Wrongs - 33 chapters

Syllabus for the first few weeks

Book I, Part First, 'Of the Study, Nature, and Extent of the Laws

Week 1 - Geography and Laws of the British Isles (Vol. I, section 4)
'Of the Countries Subject to the Laws of England' and colonial

Week 2 - Of the Laws of England (Vol I., section 3)

Week 3 - Of the Nature of Law in General (Vol I., section 2)

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

From 1066 to 1776: Classical Education and
the Survival of the West

The message of this essay is simple: Classical Education must
be taken on its own terms as the imparting of a Tradition,
not as a means to something else. The purpose of Classical
Education is the perpetuation of Western Culture, which is
to say Continental, Latinate, Graeco-Roman, Romance Culture,
by means of acquiring the languages and especially the Higher
Tradition of that culture. Thus, the re-introduction of
Classical Education is equivalent to the cultural survival of
the West, where the West is broadly construed as both the Greek
and Latin-speaking halves of the former Roman Empire, and of
their successor cultures and extentions, notably to Ireland,
Scandinavia, Germany, Eastern Europe, Russia, and the New World.

In the past, discussion of Classical Education has had, as a
subtext, the fear that the Classics might be eliminated from
the curriculum, and the defense of that curriculum on any
terms of surrender. Those fears were amply justified. It is
not ours to judge whether the terms of surrender were wisely
accepted or not, or to censure those who made the surrender.
Classical Education once formed the entire substance of eight
years of grammar school and four years of college. This prime
educational =estate real= was confiscated, unjustly, to make
room for other objects and purposes, hijacking the ability
of Western Culture to perpetuate itself. Eventually, the
level of linguistic competence in the classical languages
was lowered to the point that they were introduced late,
without learning how to speak them at all, and with younger
children so segregated from the older that rather than being
exposed to the accomplishments of both teachers and older
students for eight years, the student of the classics must
learn the culture-bearing languages, often in self-study,
and without the aid of competent, fluent speakers and writers
of the language. The dumbed down, watertight and spoon-fed
nature of the remaining language lessons does not help to make
linguistically competent mature speakers.

This situation has created an illusion that Latin and Greek
are dead langauges, and have been for a millenium or so.
This is true of Classical Latin and Greek, but is hardly
true of all forms of the languages =per se.= In reality, it
is Classical Education and the inculcation of the Tradition
that has died, and with it the number of speakers has recently
been reduced to a nearly non-viable population size. However,
this near-extinction event did not take place in A.D. 476,
but somewhat after A.D. 1776, a time much closer to our own
and more relevant to our current century and situation.

The proportion of Latin and Greek vocabulary in English should
be sufficient evidence that Latin was a living language during
the time English was formed, which is certainly well after the
fall of the Roman Empire. However, the myth has arisen that
the presence of Latin and Greek terms in English are `scholarly
borrowings,' as if nativist English-speaking scholars, writing
in English but somehow instructed in Latin as a foreign language
decided to select certain Latin terms for embedding in the
English matrix, despite their patently foriegn and alien
nature, as a form of pedantry and deliberate obfuscation.
This is hardly a fair description of what happened. First,
Latin, French, and native Saxon vocabulary all underwent the
Great Vowel Shift together, showing that the borrowing (or at
least the framing of the pronunciation rules for `borrowed'
Latin) must have been in the medieval period. Second, the
phonetic rules for French words and for Latin words are the
same, indicating that the Latin was borrowed into the French
subculture and fused with native English at a later date.
We pronounce Latin a certain way in these borrowings---we
pronounce it in fact as if it were Norman French. (This may be
proved from Anglo-Latin rhyming poetry in the medieval period).

Latin words are thus not borrowings from a foreign language in
the sense of =kaftan= or =cocoa,= but were already embedded in
the culture that is one of two constituent cultures whose fusion
formed Middle and thus Modern English. As for Greek terms, they
are not borrowed directly from Greek, using Greek sound rules,
but according to the long traditions of Graeco-Roman cultural
symbiosis, with an overlay of Romance Culture sound-rules
that requires Greek to be first converted to Latin, and then
(using the Old French pronunciation of Latin as modified by
the vowel shift) to English. Even new borrowings follow this
historical path, so as not to be jarring to our English, i.e.,
native Latinate, ears.

In other words, Latin, Greek, and French were `incorporated'
into English as a package deal---specifically, an integrated
cultural and linguistic package called Romance, or Continental
European Culture. The Romance Culture of Norman French, with
Latinate learning and its older substrate of Greek learning,
was one of two cultures and linguistic bases of English, and so
is not by any strech of the imagination `foreign.' Latin can
no more be disentangled from the Norman French basis than the
relative contributions of Frankish and vulgar Latin Romance
language can. They are equal partners and constintuents in
that portion of the English language.

The way Latin and Greek is used in English is much more complex
than the borrowing of single, isolated terms and concepts---it
borders on the sort of code switching between two different
languages, depending on context, that linguists point to in
hybrid dialects like Spanglish. It is exactly this sort of
contextual use of French and Latinate words, especially towards
the end of the sentence, that gives Chaucer his distinctive
style, and to a lesser extent makes Shakespeare's diction
so striking and mellifluous. More prosaically, the Latinate
terms of scholarly and professional jargon are part of a complex
cultural context, and can hardly replaced by native substitutes.
If a native translation does occur, one must know the code
book to participate in the Tradition and decode its texts.
This is as true of English texts as of Latin.

Spanglish is neither English or Spanish, but a complex switching
back and forth between the two. Switching means that, while
the switch is in the `on' position, Latin (and French) is as
much `our language' as Anglo-Saxon. The context or cultural
register is different when the Latinate coding is engaged,
that is to say, it is literary, scholarly, or professional
jargon, but these are real accomplishments in the Tradition of
Western Culture, and their vocabulary is not up for bargaining
or `dynamic translation.' The Tradition dictates which Greek
words have which Latin equivalents, and what the possible
English translations of both are, if there is to be any
translation at all!

It may be that this high register of culture-bearing discourse
is one we happen to dislike intensely and think pretentious
or perverse and inimicable (perhaps some Hispanics speaking
Spanglish harbor a similar distaste for the dominant Anglo
culture, even as they share the language of it in their
everyday speech). However, social and political attitudes and
agendas, on the one hand, and linguistic facts on the other,
are two different things---Americans speak English whatever
they may think of Britain politically; and English speakers
speak Normanised Latin, run through the meat grinder of the
Great Vowel Shift, whatever they may happen to think of the
French soccer team or the antics of Norman overlords and
their descendents.

To summarise: Latin is your native language. Learn it.

Learn Latin the English way, which is the Old French way, and
learn Greek the Latinate and English way also, unless you have
some more direct connection to Greek and hence Roman Culture.
These traditional ways underlie the incorporation of Latinate
and French elements in our language, and follow a *single* set
of rules, showing that they are a pre-packaged, constitutive
whole of that portion of our language and culture. They are, in
short, our Romanity, as well as our Latinity. In the judicial
court of culture, you are either an advocate for the Roman
claims, like the `civilians' or practitioners of Civil Law,
or their friends the Common Lawyers, who like Bracton insist
the English state is part of the Roman Commonwealth, the Res
Publica---or you are part of the prosecution. The prosecution
claims all our assets as their own, and claims that Anglo-Saxons
invented Law French, and the Corpus Juris of both Civilian
Municipal and Gentile law. They claim to own our literary
Tradition (as if they could read it), and assign all the glories
of English culture to its Germanic parts. 90% of our culture
is thus left untouched by scholarship, unmarked and unmissed
by barbarian Conservatives and barbarian Liberals alike.
Both pride themselves in how Western they are, and what a
wonderful addition to the world their global domination makes.

I do not mean, of course, any such absurd notion as that
Classical Latin is still spoken, or anyone's native language.
Classical Latin was already an artificial literary tongue
when the Western Empire collapsed, and whether any significant
number of persons still spoke it even then, fourteen centuries
ago, is an open question. Classical Greek had as its literary
model a period four centuries before that of Classical Latin,
and was no doubt correspondingly more artificial. But this
artificiality in no way compromised the literary tradition---the
continued reading of Classical authors, and their use as models
for composition; their employment in fact, as Classics of our
language and culture. The literary tradition, despite the ups
and downs in competence of the culture-bearers, persists for
thirteen centuries after the collapse of the empire; in some
respects it persists today.

What I am asserting is that both Greek-speaking and
Latin-speaking Roman Culture, and its continuation in Romance
Culture, exhibit a tendency to have on the one hand a scholarly,
culture-bearing tongue for writing and on the other a demotic
or vulgar tongue for speaking. This formal =diglossy= sets
in early, certainly by A.D. 400 at the latest in both cases,
and has persisted well into the modern period. We need only
regard the Roman Catholic church, which worshipped in a literary
hybrid of Classical and Vulgar Latin to within living memory,
or the similar continuing use of Koine (Atticising commoners'
Greek) in the Greek Church, to see the survival. These island
survivals are the tip of a much greater iceberg of clerical,
legal, medical, and scholarly use that did not entirely die
out until the early post-Napoleonic era.

The time is certainly past when anyone writing in English,
who wishes a wider continental audience, must translate his
scholarly work into Latin. The time is also past when learning
Latin was the single most important pre-requisite to a white
collar (clerical) job, or an absolute necessity for a lawyer,
a medical doctor, or a clergyman, not to mention a scholar.

With this loss of classical preferment---the sustaining force
of professional careers and literary necessity---the linguistic
stock of Latin and Greek has certainly fallen in barbarian eyes.
No loot, no glory. The modern barbarian feels little need at
all for such adornments, much less is he inclined to spend any
considerable length of time and certainly of money on them.
We have far better things to do with our children than
perpetuate the West, apparently. Certainly, the `what's
in it for me' attitude is not the sort one usually bears
towards one's cultural identity. If Latin mattered to our
modern barbarian, he would value it accordingly. Time spent
learning Latin would be put down as part of his cultural defense
budget---something no patriotic Anglo-Saxon warrior could afford
to neglect. Barbarian kings pay and pay handsomely for clerks.
They know they need someone to write all those letters or
make the legal forms up. They cannot imagine ever reading
such things themselves (and thus their utter contempt is shown
in dismissive laws). Today, such care and solicitousness is
lavished, in outsourcing, on English language skills---that
is, the sort of fellaheen, post-Latinate English that passes
for a worldwide language of trade, business, and technology.
This reduces the level of Western Culture to that of the Chinook
Trading Jargon, or the Persian use of Aramaic as the imperial
=lingua franca= and language of trade and commerce.

The Death of the West

Let us phrase the matter another way: Western Culture is dying
out. The claim that Western Culture can survive the loss of
Latin and Greek as the secure possession of its academic and
clerical classes is mostly bluster. Nativist English Culture
is not the same as Anglo-French, Continental, Romano-Greek
Culture. The rejection of Latin is the rejection of one part
of ourselves---a sort of cultural lobotomy. Whatever is left,
after the Latinate part (i.e., the better part of our French,
Romance, or Continental heritage) is removed, is at most but
one hemisphere, the barbarian one in fact. The barbarian is
never far beneath the surface of civilised life. If we lose
our culture, our Tradition, and our language, then we will
lose our civilisation as well.

The Successor Culture in the West is still insecure. It likes
to claim the achievements of its immediate predecessor as
its own, without warrant. It does this while despising and
destroying those very same achievements. Here is where we
must part company with the usual hand-wringing over Classical
Education and Education in general. There is no `decline'
in education---education itself, in the Classics and the
Tradition of the West, has been entirely obliterated. We are
left with the perception of a slow drift downwards, and a false
hope that this deline might be reversed. The reality is that
the drifting is over, and random natural and chaotic process,
the lot of the uncivilised barbarian, is taking its place.

Let us set aside any such hope as is contained in the word
`decline.' The West is not in decline. It has all but
departed. To the extent that Latin and Greek are altogether
unknown, and the educational traditions for learning them
are no longer even practiced, to exactly that extent we are
barbaric, because the high culture of the West is extinct.
If we are in fact a civilised people, then we are some other
civilisation than the West was, and we neither understand nor
reverence the West, except in our memories of it as a possible
object for plunder and self-glorification---and of which we
now claim to have every part of it that was worth having,
by right of conquest I suppose.

The Lost Cause

This is not a difficult point to understand. The high culture
of the West, continuously dominant in Europe and its American
colonies, was overthrown in a worldwide convulsive Revolution
between 1776 and about 1820, which is in historical terms a
fairly recent time, though quite out of living memory, though
many oral traditions from this period are still circulating,
not to mention well-known written accounts. Western Culture
is what we know by various names as the ancien regime, (late
medieval to early modern) feudalism, and by the evocative
name despotism. [Despota is the Greek form of address for
a bishop, or a noble lord. Despotism was not a slam-word,
except in particular political factions, until the Revolution
we are speaking of.]

Whatever name one gives to the historical trends is of little
moment---progress, modernity, the rise of the Middle Class,
renaissance, reformation, and revolution. They all mean
the same thing in ethnic terms: first, emancipation from,
and then the extermination of, Norman French Culture, its
heirs and assigns, and the obliteration of Norman provision
of Common Law; i.e., the allowance of English customary law in
the context of Feudal Culture. The Rule of Law, ultimately of
Roman Law with its respect for local custom as =jus gentile,=
is replaced by the more Anglo-Saxon notion of quantitative
trial by combat---democracy by vote and, passim, by bullet,
of this mass of soldiers against that one. Or, as we quaintly
phrase it, of Majority Rule.

With the loss of the culture-bearing language, and of Classical
Education, we will lose the culture of the West. To be honest,
the cause was lost from the beginning. It is somewhat pathetic
to see the efforts of the `English' aristocratic families
to retain their ingenuous Frenchness in the middle ages,
against stiff linguistic and demographic odds. Only about
10,000 Normans migrated in the initial conquest of 1066.
This is certainly sufficient to impose one language on a
large subject population---see the similar success of the
English language in India. Yet, by 1262 the French-speakers
had a very significant Nativist revolt on their hands. We see
them struggling to teach their children French (and of course
Latin), importing the latest teachers and grammars from French,
where the latest styles and fashions in language had already
marginalised their dialect. Until 1400 French was the only
vulgar tongue permitted at Oxford. If Papa (not Daddy) is
going to pay for an education, he wants it to be a French one.
Law French, a specialised jargon of Norman, or Old, French,
continued to be the language of the law down to 1732.

The ultimate success of French, Latinate, and Romance Culture
for four centuries, and its significant survival for three
more, right down to the revolution of 1688 and a generation
or so beyond, in the form of Jacobitism, is largely due to
the continuing appeal of continental culture as an object for
ambition, Latin as a literary medium of wide scope, and, until
the early modern period, maintenance by England of a `footprint'
on the continent. Before the nationalism of the Elizabethan
era, the claim to the old Angevin empire, to Brittany as well
as Wales, and France as well as England, was not bluster and
bravado but a bitter memory of native soil that had been lost.
We are now beyond caring and `think it better' that England and
France are divided by the natural and linguistic boundaries.
So we might one day be beyond caring that the Southwest is lost
to the United States, as a Spanish-speaking region it might
more conveniently be included in Mexico. To think this way,
*as if* past causes or old boundaries did not matter, is to
forswear your allegience to your own culture. Our forswearing
of the old allegiances in favor of Nationalism and Nativism
shows, dramatically, we have forsworn our allegiance to Western
Culture, to the old imperial causes, or to any variant of them.
New Empires we may have, but they won't be Western ones.

Education is not a Lost Cause

The prospect for cultural survival and revival lies, solely, in
the capability to generate and educate children in that culture.

Subjecting children to eight years of schooling, six days a
week, is a desparation act of cultural survival. It (Classical
Education) worked surpisingly well, for about seven centuries
(1066-1776). At first, it was facilitated by the custom of
leaving children at monesteries as =oblates,= at age seven,
and allowing them to enter the novitiate at age 10 or 12.
Later, the education was formalised in Grammar schools, with
a curriculum recognisably the same from Anglo-Saxon times down
to the American Revolution.

There is no need to spend eight or twelve years in learning
one's *mother's* tongue. But it takes that long to learn
a scholarly tongue. Indeed, after this it takes another
`20 years lucubrations' to learn a cultural tradition, such
as the Common Law. No one can afford to invest 30 years in
anything other than a Tradition. No investment other than
`what we have always done' is certain enough, in a secure and
Traditional culture, to make expectation of the payoff rational.
Will desktop publishing with MS Word be a marketable skill
in 2040? The proof that we do not have a secure culture today
is that we have no Traditions worth betting the bank on.

Only the perpetuation of continental culture in the hostile
demographic conditions of Britain made the medieval and early
modern (Latin) Grammar school inevitable. This is one thing
we need to learn today---homeschooling is sufficient to equal
and exceed whatever the existing school system does. Mostly,
it is necessary as a *preventive* measure. But homeschooling
and separatism will not, of themselves, perpetuate the culture
of the West. They will do a better job of perpetuating
whatever is ultimately replacing the West, and will make the
Successor Culture a better culture than it otherwise would be,
but only a return to Classical Education, whether conducted
at home as was common in the colonial South, or at a one-room
traditional grammar school, can pass on the Traditions of
the West. Age-segregated non-classical schools don't count.
Wrong culture, wrong language, wrong method. If Momma knows
best, it's not the West. Momma can give birth to little
barbarians, but only Classical Education can make them Citizens.

This is obvious: if you don't give your child language lessons
or piano lessons your child won't speak French or Japanese or
play piano. If a language and tradition is not passed on,
then it is not passed on. Attempts to create programs for
learning `the classics in translation' or taking existing
educational models and grafting in a bit of Latin or even
Greek, while not using any part of the Tradition, are just
that---attempts. They are not will not be successes, at least
at cultural continuity. They are hybrids that might conserve
a bit here and there, but the Museum is not the Culture.
Modern academic tradition, and all of its alternatives, are
powerless to transmit Classical Culture. Only Traditional
Classical Education can do that.

The essential problem is: why don't we, deep down, care enough
about our own (Western) culture, so that we make the effort
to revive the languages, learning, and tradition of the West?
Largely, it is a problem of Hate.

It is certainly hard for moderns to sympathise with the Normans,
or Feudalism. We consider Feudalism's final overthow, and the
end to dominance of the British aristocracy, as our greatest
victory and the foundation of our country. Culture and
Tradition, however, is not a matter of whom you sympathise
with, but of who you are. We may not much *like* the Normans,
and wish their memory and all their evil works effaced from
the Earth (and this the depth of our ethnic hatred and the
anti-Roman cleansing program that is at the core of our current,
successor, its culture and incipient civilisation), ---yet
that does not change the fact that our language, our culture,
and our genetic heritage all point back to Anglo-French, and
hence to Anglo-Latin, our distinctive modes of Latinity and
Romanity, as one of two or three constituents; and of those
two or three to the culturally dominant one, of our =Natio.=
When we hate them, we hate ourselves.

This is the secret to the failure of Classical Education, both
in the generation after the American Revolution and its failure
in subsequent revival. Latin delenda est. The self-hatred of
the half-breed leaves us wishing both to Be yet also to Destroy
the West. We cannot do both of course, so we alternate between
puffing ourselves up over our great heritage and the next moment
tearing that very heritage down, obliterating, eradicating,
and cleansing---purging---all memory of it. The longer this
rapid cultural cycling goes on without real participation in the
culture of the West, the less likely it is to end in anything
resembling the West. This whole Graeco-Roman heritage thing
will, over generations, work itself out of the gene pool.
Who cares if you are one-sixteenth or one thirty-second
anything? You either are something, or you are not. In the
end, it is a matter of choosing sides and sticking with it.

Continental Culture, coming from the Graeco-Roman base via
Romance language and culture, is aligned with Christianity
and a particular intellectual, not to mention material and
folkish, heritage. A very small fraction of all persons alive
in the middle ages are responsible for the literary output we
now call `history.' Overwhelmingly, if you are on the side of
`history' you are on the side of the French-speaking families,
and those of their children who were trained to be clerics.
Before that, you are on the side of Anglo-Saxons who had a
special enthusiasm for Latin and the Roman Church. Before that,
you are on the side of Romano-British imperial citizens and
their converts and variously-fortunate descendants in Ireland,
Scotland, Wales, and Britanny. This cultural blend of Celt and
Saxon was both insular and continental---the genetic material
of the Angevin empire of the Plantagenets, as well as of the
American South. It was ruled by aristocratic, French-speaking
families on both sides of the Channel. The whole was united by
the patriotic myth of Britain, not least the Arthurian cycle,
in both its English and French Romance forms, not to mention
the Latin sources of these.

Today, the literary output of the Heptarchy and the Angevin
Empire is largely ignored, as it was mostly written in Latin,
which few people, even scholars, now read; secondarily it
was written in older dialects of English and French that are
mostly not comprehensible to modern speakers of either of those
languages. In other words, the barbarian doesn't care---it's
not his history; it's not his language. Why, then, claim
to be The West? The vanity of the modern Anglo-Americans
demands a glorious past, and they find enough to satisfy
their hankering for one a simulation of a Classical Education
(in translation of course) and a suitable revenge in making
it despised and unimportant. One day, they won't feel the
need, and the Classics and the West will be dead to them.
Only the true children of the West among them will care.
The Anglo- Americans will be sure to remind them that they
have been out-voted, and in any event they don't have money
to show and are against all the forces of progress.

The acid test for such a Classical Education (and for the
West's will to survive) is whether the Tradition is in fact
accessible when the education is complete. If the answer is no,
we should neither expect nor blame the products if they do not
measure up to the intellectual level of the Founding Fathers.
These men were both Classically Educated, and intended their
children should be so. That they failed is a far more greivous
loss for Western Civilisation than any temporary fault with the
constitution or political arrangements---it closes off forever
the possibility of revival, until the situation is rectified,
first in the teachers, and only afterwards in the students.

As our modern Anglo-Saxons are wont to phrase it: we are on the
losing side. We are against progress, against the victorious
(and well-monied) side. This is proof we are not elect, not
victors by combat in the Contest of Quantity. We are against
English and English-speaking White Culture. That is, we are the
side of Western Culture and Christianity. Secular Liberalism is
not a fluke. It is one more way of sticking it to the Normans
(or the Anglo-Saxon monks) and everything they stand for,
including not incidentally but rather especially anything that
smacks of the Romish or the Latinate.

White Supremacists are necessarily, at least in the long
run, nativists, nationalists, and pagans. The whites
who aren't pagans and aren't nativists have long ago lost
their cause, the nativists will point out. All the power of
secular, nuclear-armed, classically liberal, bolshevist and
Anglo-Imperial barbarians is arrayed against us, should we
forget that fact. Insisting on White Unity, at this point, is
insisting on catipulation of Western Culture, of Romano-Greek
Culture, and of Christianity. Our Supremacist and Nativist
antagonists have little to apologise for, since no quarter
is given to us, neither was it in Atlanta or in the modern
educational system or in modern economic competition; the
Latinate, Continental, culture, always and everywhere, delenda
est. (The grousing of a few powerless White Supremacists here
and there about their lack of political power and the fate of
whites generally should not blind us to the far greater number
of Secularist White Supremacists who are in full control and
bombing every Classical Civilisation they can find, wherever
that civilisation shows a sign of putting up a fight).

I am not pleading for minority status there. That has
already been granted. Whites with Western Culture have had
card-carrying persecuted minority since, oh, Drogheda, if not
the medieval peasant rebellions. As a minority, we have been
subjected to the usual indignities and oppressions. As we have
done our share of oppressing, we have little to complain of.
Where possible, we have been expelled. Where that wasn't
practical, we have been reconstructed into New Barbarians.
I am asking that we remember who we are, and that in the past
`English' meant, and certainly its Christian part meant,
a commitment to the continental and the Romano-Greek, that
is to Western, culture. If there is to be a stand made
for Western Culture, we must understand that it cannot be a
stand for Native English. It must be a stand for continental
culture, for our French and Latin side. We must be prepared,
as defenders of the West and Christianity, to understand we
will be called race traitors and worse by the other side.
There are only two sides here: the side of Roman culture, and
the side of English nativist supremacism. We cannot have our
culture both ways, barbarian fiction, and Classical Tradition.

As much as I am interested in the Immigration debate in an
abstract, detached sense, I cannot help noting that stopping
an influx of non-nativists will not much help my people, who
are being systematically eliminated in a rather public way,
with public holidays to mark and remember each occassion of
`victory' over them. This renders my interest in the fate of
other peoples who might or might not displace my antagonists
somewhat academic. I would warn, however those optimists who
believe that speaking Spanish means alignment with continental
European Culture, to address first the even more dubious and
improbable proposition that speaking English does. The day
is late and there is little evidence, on this continent,
that either Spanish or English speakers will long tolerate
the few remaining shreds of European, Christian Culture;
or that they will find common ground in Western Culture or
spare each other much on account of it. The largest group of
persons with the requisite genetic, linguistic, and cultural
heritage is already quite far from embracing Latin, Romish
Culture and religion, without severe qualification. They have
a strong attraction to the ethnic cleansing of the victors,
and are prone to those cultural legacies that are strongest
in their nativism (Shakespeare, say, rather than Gabriel
Harvey or the Euphuism of Lily; Milton, not Izaak Walton).
Although they remember with a certain fondness the Cavalier,
chivalric culture, and occasionally even remember the older
construction of their own culture as pro-Norman [this is quite
rare], mostly they lap up the Whig and Romantic counter-Whig
fabrications that glorify their conquerors. This was as true
in the Ante-Bellum South, with its addiction to Romanticism,
as it was in the Post-Bellum South, with its commitment to
imported German and Prussian Culture. The South of `Birth of
a Nation' is a South that has abandoned Western Civilisation,
and returned to its nativist, barbarian roots---to the point
of idolising Lincoln and White Supremacism, both notions very
far from the sentiments of the old aristocratic Southern gentry.

A Western Cultural Homeland and Western Survival

We do not need the Latinate equivalent of Zionism. There is no
need to find a homeland where Western Culture can flourish---it
is quite enough for it to continue or revive in those places
where English, French, Italian, Spanish, and other continental
languages are currently spoken. There we find physical
descendents of the =ancien regime= who have not entirely
abandoned their Western heritage, whom we must convince to
abandon the Nativist side and join the cause of their Romance
Culture-bearing side. We need for the Englishman and Old Stock
American to discover, after all these centuries, his Inner
Frenchman. Wherever English is spoken as a native language,
this ghost of the Plantagenets lurks, in the heart of the
Southern Gentlemen, even in some moods the Northern Puritan;
even in the heart of those fellaheen English-speakers who,
despite the clerical and intellectual roots of their language,
have have fallen well beneath the white-collar level of their
own past culture, well beyond a social level requiring either
French or Latin.

The first step to survival is to understand there is a
problem surviving in the first place. We are far too smug
and approach Classical Education as if it were some luxury
rather than the essential and indispensible communication of
our Tradition. If no one chooses to be the culture-bearer,
and no one makes the requisite sacrifices, then the culture
will not survive---certainly not on this continent. It is not
a matter of a dwindling minority, but the entire extinction
of the European heritage, except as a mythic symbol in the
nativist superstition about Our Glorious Past.

Persons considering the U.S. Constitution and its untimely
fate a century and a half ago, or that of the Early Republic,
seldom hit upon the real problem. They act as if the current
population could somehow, magically, come to a similar or
better political arrangement. Even when this hope is not
as naive as belief in a golden era, or a simple desire
for reaction or conservatism, it is mis-guided. It does
not allow for the radicalness of the Revolution, or the
magnitude of its failure. These facts must be squarely faced
if we Westerners are to survive with our Westerness intact.
The Founding Fathers certainly did not intend the overthrow of
their own civilisation. They thought they could excise part of
it that greatly offended them: the feudal system, prelatism,
or despotism; specifically the Romish parts. They believed
they could build a system to replace the missing pieces.
Some of them believed the Christian parts could be paganised
or secularised. They thought that good intentions, such as
the perpetuation in Universities of Classical Education and
state subsidies for Classical Education would both work and
be effective in maintaining a Reformed, Democratic version
of Classicism. They were naive and underestimated the
difficulty of this task, which failed over the course of the
following century. The loss of institutional footprint and
economic pressures on the educated student both created an
occasion for Classical Education to drop below the 1-2% level
that was customary in the male population. The provision of
a simulacrum of Classical Education (all the learning and none
of the competence), proved as fatal as a parasitic virus in the
host of Western Culture. Perhaps, without the viable economic
inducements to a clerical education, Classical Education was
doomed from the start (of the Revolutionary era). In any
event, the destruction of one form of material culture, the
social and hierarchical organisation of the =ancien regime,=
and its clerical class, led to a series of challenges to
cultural survival that we have not yet met.

Without Classical Education we cannot place ourselves again
in the feet of the Founding Fathers, and correct any of their
mistakes. We do not possess securely the cultural background
or Tradition to do any such thing. The Barbarian can only
do two things with the documents produced by the Founding
Fathers: despise them or worship them superstitiously.
Understanding them from within, as something well-done and
similar to something he might himself do is not a permanent
possibility. I saw a few weeks ago the Federalist Papers
translated into Modern English so that modern college students
(at the University of Washington bookstore, where they were
offered for sale) could understand them. I can well believe
it: this is not the result of a `decline' in education, but
an absence of cultural capacity in the first place. It is
often said that Iraqis lack a capacity for Democracy---what is
seldom noted as a corollary is that Americans, too, increasingly
lack this capacity and for the same reason. As the European
type is displaced by the Nativist, English-speaking type, in
regard to Democracy and many other things that are relative
to Western Culture, Americans are increasingly no more Western
than Iraqis. The problem is not `Decline' but ethnic cleansing
and the concommitent obliteration of Tradition and the means
to perpetuate that Tradition, the Classical Education.

We cannot pillory barbarians for a failure to pass on Western
Culture, whether they are Iraqi barbarians or American ones.
It is not their culture and their language. They may be
instruments in the downfall of the West, but they are not the
cause of the failure. That cause we must find in ourselves.
There is no terror or terrorist greater than the one lurking
in one's own soul. We find there sufficient cause for both
our barbarian and our Roman Citizen.

It is pointless to hold up one's own country and people as
an object of hatred and contempt. The Flag, the Declaration
of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, as well as the
inherited Classical Education of Federalism and the Early
Republic and Western Culture needed to interpret them---all
these are both symbols of continuity and symbols of the
destruction of Tradition. We cannot say that any of them
have been completely effective at raising up a culture, nor
completely effective at their Revolutionary and destructive
objects; but fortunately we can also say that their defeat,
and the defeats they have inflicted, have not resulted in the
entire obliteration of Western Culture either. Cultures are
bred, and symbols or artifacts from the past are beyond both
exerting an irresistable influence and beyond the potentiality
for complete oblivion. They remain permanent possibilities,
as well as permanent dangers, for the Race.

While the past is beyond valuation as both totems of our
own achievement (what did we do to earn a share of its
glories beside inherit it?), or as objects of vilification
and derision, it is equally pointless to not take sides,
to not take our stand. One cannot both both be for and
against Graeco-Roman Culture, at least as far as one makes
it one's own. It is possible to be for and against adopted
cultures, or to value this culture highly and that one not so
highly---so long as one does not apply this transvaluation to
one's own culture. *One's Own* culture is simply that---One's
Own, one's heritage. Whatever parts of it may be good or bad,
eradicable or essential, it is part of one's self. To oppose
Classical, Latinate Culture in the name of English nativism, is
to make war with one half of oneself in the name of the other.
English language and English Culture, including its American
branch, is half French, id est, half Latinate. That is true
of language, of culture, and so far as it embodies Tradition,
of Education. To become free of oneself is also to hate
one's self. From the Past, there is no freedom, only oblivion.

Happy Independence Day.