William Blackstone, born in the year 1723, was a very learned English jurist, scholar and professor who produced great historical and analytical treatise called on the common law called Commentaries on the Laws of England. First published in four volumes in the period of 1765-1769, this particular book is not only an historical treasure but still remains as a very important source of the common law and its principles.
William Blackstone, posthumous son of a London mercer was born in Cheapside in 1723.
William Blackstone got his early education at Charterhouse School & Pembroke College, Oxford. In 1743. He became a fellow of All Souls College, Oxford and was called to the bar as a barrister at the Middle Temple in 1746. He practiced at Westminster for many years and in 1758 he came back to Oxford and started practicing along with his friend at the University for a Lecture in law. Their chair known as the Vinerian professorship exists till today. He published several treatises on ‘Magne Carta’ and the ‘Charter of the Forests’. In 1761 he won election as a Member of Parliament for ‘Hindon’. He also wrote many poems. The mention of Blackstone’s work can be found in Charles Portis’s comic novel, ‘The Dog of the South’ and in Harper Lee’s ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’.
Also U.S. courts very often quote Blackstone’s ‘Commentaries on the Laws of England’. Actually the constitution of the U.S. is written mainly on the basis of the theories and principles of Blackstone’s laws. U.S. Supreme Court quotes his works whenever they want to engage in historical discussions. Other common law courts also mention his formulation. So we can say that his contribution in the field of common laws all over the world is just undeniable.
If one goes through the works of Blackstone then he/she will find the fact that his works are very often synthetic though his writings were dignified and organized within the format of general literature. He also had the feelings of Anti-Catholic sentiments. His commentaries summarized his entire attitude towards Roman Catholics.
The name of William Blackstone will never fade away from the field of jurisdiction and laws. His creations, principles are followed even today which is a great achievement in itself.