Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 1
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Crow, Matthew 2015. Thomas Jefferson and the Uses of Equity. Law and History Review, Vol. 33, Issue. 01, p. 151.


    ×

James Madison, Law Student and Demi-Lawyer

Abstract

We think of James Madison as a political theorist, legislative drafter, and constitutional interpreter. Recent scholarship has fought fiercely over the nature of his political thought. Unlike other important early national leaders—John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, Edmund Randolph, James Wilson—law has been seen as largely irrelevant to Madison's intellectual biography. Madison, however, studied law and, at least in one extant manuscript, took careful notes. These notes have been missing for over a century, and their loss contributed to the sense that Madison must not have been that interested in law. Now located, these notes reveal Madison's significant grasp of law and his striking curiosity about the problem of language. Madison's interest in interpretation is certainly not news to scholars. These notes, however, help to establish that this interest predated the Constitution and that his interest in constitutional interpretation was an application of a larger interest in language. Moreover, Madison thought about the problem of legal interpretation as a student of law, never from the secure status of lawyer. Over his lifetime, he advocated a variety of institutional approaches to constitutional interpretation, and this comfort with nonjudicial interpreters, along with a peculiar ambivalence about the proper location of constitutional interpretation, may owe a great deal to his self-perception as a law student but never a lawyer.

Copyright
Corresponding author
bilder@bc.edu
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Donald O. Dewey , “James Madison Helps Clio Interpret the Constitution,” American Journal of Legal History 15 (1971): 38

Louis C. Schaedler , “James Madison, Literary Craftsman,” William and Mary Quarterly 3 (1946): 515–33

Joseph Smith , “Review of Papers of John Marshall,” Columbia Law Review 75 (1975): 687

Charles T. Cullen , “New Light on John Marshall's Legal Education and Admission to the Bar,” American Journal of Legal History 16 (1972): 345

William F. Swindler , “John Marshall's Preparation for the Bar—Some Observations on His Law Notes,” American Journal of Legal History 11 (1967): 207

Douglass Adair , “James Madison's Autobiography,” William and Mary Quarterly 2 (1945): 195–96

Dennis F. Thompson , “The Education of a Founding Father: The Reading List for John Witherspoon's Course in Political Theory, as Taken by James Madison,” Political Theory 4 (1976): 523–29

Tom Glynn and Craig C. Hagensick , “Books for the Use of the United States in Congress Assembled, 1783 and 1800,” Libraries & Culture 37 (2002), 109–22

M. L. Cohen , “Thomas Jefferson Recommends a Course of Law Study,” University of Pennsylvania Law Review 119 (1971): 823–44

Van Vechten Veeder, “The English Reports, 1292–1865,” Harvard Law Review 15 (1901): 1

Mary Sarah Bilder , “English Settlement and Local Governance,” in The Cambridge History of Law in America, ed. Christopher Tomlins and Michael Grossberg (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008)

William R. Leslie , “Similarities in Lord Mansfield's and Joseph Story's View of Fundamental Law,” American Journal of Legal History 1 (1957): 278

Herbert A. Johnson , “John Jay: Lawyer in a Time of Transition, 1764–1775,” University of Pennsylvania Law Review 124 (1976): 1260, 1282

Peter Hoffer , “Law and Liberty: In the Matter of Provost William Smith of Philadelphia, 1758,” William and Mary Quarterly 38 (1981): 681

Douglas Wilson , “Sowerby Revisited: The Unfinished Catalogue of Thomas Jefferson's Library,” William and Mary Quarterly 41 (1984): 615

Robert M. Hughes , “William and Mary: The First American Law School,” William and Mary Quarterly 2 (1922): 40

Frederika Teute Schmidt and Barbara Ripel Wilhelm , “Early Pro-Slavery Petitions in Virginia,” William and Mary Quarterly 30 (1976): 133

Douglas L. Wilson , “Jefferson's Early Notebooks,” William and Mary Quarterly 42 (1985): 433

Frederick Mosteller and David L. Wallace , Applied Bayesian and Classical Inference: The Case of the Federalist Papers, 2nd ed. (New York: Springer-Verlag, 1984)

Saul Cornell , “A New Paradigm for the Second Amendment,” Law and History Review 22 (2004): 163

Stuart Banner , “When Christianity Was Part of the Common Law,” Law and History Review 16 (1998): 27

Walter J. Ong , Orality and Literacy: The Technologizing of the Word (London: Methuen, 1982)

Joan Shelley Rubin , “What Is the History of the History of the Book?Journal of American History 90 (2003): 555

Ann Blair , “Humanist Methods in Natural Philosophy: The Commonplace Book,” Journal of the History of Ideas 53 (1992): 541

Edward Wetmore , “Patent Law,” Yale Law Journal 17 (1907): 101

John F. Manning , “Textualism and the Equity of the Statute,” Columbia Law Review 101 (2001): 1

A. W. B. Simpson , “The Rise and Fall of the Legal Treatise: Legal Principles and the Forms of Legal Literature,” University of Chicago Law Review 48 (1981): 632

Lucia Dacome , “Noting the Mind: Commonplace Books and the Pursuit of the Self in Eighteenth-Century Britain,” Journal of the History of Ideas 65 (2004): 603

Kathryn Preyer , “Crime, the Criminal Law and Reform in Post-Revolutionary Virginia,” Law and History Review 1 (1983): 5385

Marion Tinling , “Thomas Lloyd's Reports of the First Federal Congress,” William and Mary Quarterly 18 (1961): 519

Jeffrey K. Sawyer , “Benefit of Clergy in Maryland and Virginia,” American Journal of Legal History 34 (1990): 4968

Charles F. Hobson , “The Negative on State Laws: James Madison, the Constitution, and the Crisis of Republican Government,” William and Mary Quarterly, 36 (1979), 215–35

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Law and History Review
  • ISSN: 0738-2480
  • EISSN: 1939-9022
  • URL: /core/journals/law-and-history-review
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×