Wilkins, 321 - 323.Glanville, who wrote within the half century previous to Magna Carta, says;
"Each of the knights summoned far this purpose (as jurors) ought to swear that he will neither utter that which is false, nor knowingly conceal the truth." - Reeve calls the trial by jury Henry says that the jurors "took a solemn oath, that they would faithfully discharge the duties of their office, and not suffer an innocent man to be condemned, nor any guilty person to be acquitted." -
And any tribunal, whether judge or jury, that attempts to try these issues, has no more moral right to be swerved from the line of justice, by the will of a legislature, than by the will of any other body of men whatever.
In both cases the simple oaths of the jurors, and not the instructions of the judges, nor the statutes of kings nor legislatures, are their legal guides to their duties. The nature of the common law courts existing prior to Magna Carta, such as the county courts, the hundred courts, the court-leet, and the court-baron, all prove, what has already been proved from Magna Carta, that, in jury trials, the juries fixed the sentence; because, in those courts, there was no one but the jury who could fix it, unless it were the sheriff, bailiff, or steward; and no one will pretend that it was fixed by them.
an honest jury will thankfully accept good advice from judges, as their assistants; but they are bound by their oaths to present the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, to the best of their own, not the judge's, knowledge.
They are unquestionably in violation of the Common Law, and of Magna Carta, if by them be meant such evidence only as the government sees fit ft allow to go to the jury.
* * But the determinations of the Witan bound those only who were present, or who concurred in the proposition; and a vassal denying his assent to the grant, might assert that the engagement which he had contracted with his superior did not involve any pecuniary subsidy, but only rendered him liable to perform service in the field." - FOOTNOTES This quaint and curious book; (Smith's Commonwealth of England) describes the of trials, giving in detail the mode of impaneling the jury and then the conduct of the lawyers, witnesses, and court I give the following extracts, In civil causes he says:
"When it is thought that it is enough pleaded before them, and the witnesses have said what they can, one of the judges, with a brief and pithy recapitulation, reciteth to the twelve in sum the arguments of the sergeants of either side, that which the witnesses have declared, and the chief points of the evidence showed in writing, and once again putteth them in mind of the issue, and sometime giveth it them in writing, delivering to them the evidence which is showed on either part, if any be, (evidence here is called writings of contracts, authentical after the manner of England, that is to say, written, sealed, and delivered,) and biddeth them go together." - p.
18, (1275.) The following statute, passed in 1341, one hundred and twenty-five years after Magna Carta, providing for the trial of peers of the realm, and the king's ministers, contains a recognition of the principle of Magna Carta, that the jury are to fix the sentence.
Understanding the scenario can give insight on how in the criminal justice system, appearances and actions contrary to social norms, in addition to prejudice, can influence court decisions and jury trials....
The purport of the oath is, that the king swears to maintain - that is, In other words, he swears These are the same laws and customs which were called by the general name of or and, with some slight additions, were embodied in This oath not only forbids the king to enact any statutes contrary to the common law, but it proves that his statutes could be of no authority over the consciences of a jury; since, as has already been sufficiently shown, it was one part of this very common law itself, - that is, of the ancient "laws, customs, and liberties," mentioned in the oath, - that juries should judge of all questions that came before them, according to their own consciences, independently of the legislation of the king.
In this essay I will be discussing the role of the jury system and how some believe the jury is one of the most important institutions in ensuring that Australia has an effective legal system, while other...
Perhaps a fundamental overhaul of the jury system with
regards people escaping duty and to ensure that they are more
representatives of the population would not be out of the question.
The jewel of the British legal system is supposed to be the jury -
twelve fair-minded people standing between the might of government and
an accused individual.
society, the jury is considered a fundamental part of the English
legal system, and it occupies an almost sacred place in the public's
Of course, there can be no legal trial by jury, in either civil or criminal cases, where the jury are sworn to try the cases as late as 1588, admits that amercements must be fixed by the peers (8 Coke's Rep.