A Course of Legal Study

David Hoffman, A Course of Legal Study (1846).

This “textbook” for law students is interesting because of the emphasis it places on character, religion, and God’s Word for success in the study of law. The legal subjects discussed, too, are informed by a biblical view of the world lacking today in most law schools. This work is not useful as a resource on the law, but it is worth looking at for encouragement and direction. The Student’s Prayer (from Samuel Johnson) and the 30 “Student’s Resolutions” (including “To avoid, riggidly, all studies on the Sabbath”) are, at least, worth pondering. You can read this work at GoogleBooks.

Also, take a look at the University of Maryland Law School's special collection entitled "David Hoffman and the Science of Jurisprudence" describing Hoffman's impact upon American legal education.

And a short, excellent biography of Hoffman, by Michael I. Krauss writing for the Calvert Institute, can be found here.

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