LAW quotes, sayings
Laws are the silent assessors of God.
These written laws are just like spiders' webs; the small and feeble may be caught and entangled in them, but the rich and mighty force through and despise them.
Law is a bottomless pit; it is a cormorant, a harpy that devours everything.
The result of the attempt to deal with evil socially rather than at its source in the individual, to substitute an outer for an inner control of appetite, has been a monstrous legalism, of which the Eighteenth Amendment is only the most notable example.
They are the best laws, by which the king has the greatest prerogative, and the people the best liberty.
A mouse-trap: easy to enter but not easy to get out of.
A law is valuable not because it is law, but because there is right in it.
Of all the parts of a law, the most effectual is the vindicatory; for it is but lost labor to say, "Do this, or avoid that," unless we also declare, "This shall be the consequence of your noncompliance." The main strength and force of a law consists in the penalty annexed to it.
Law is the embodiment of the moral sentiment of the people.
Aristotle himself has said, speaking of the laws of his own country, that jurisprudence, or the knowledge of those laws, is the principal and most perfect branch of ethics.
It is a very easy thing to devise good laws; the difficulty is to make them effective. The great mistake is that of looking upon men as virtuous, or thinking that they can be made so by laws; and consequently the greatest art of a politician is to render vices serviceable to the cause of virtue.
Law is never wise but when merciful, out mercy has conditions; and that which is mercy to the myriads, may seem hard to the one; and that which seems hard to the one, may be mercy when viewed by the eye that looks on through eternity.
Laws are commanded to hold their tongues among arms; and tribunals fall to the ground with the peace they are no longer able to uphold.
In effect, to follow, not to force, the public inclination, to give a direction, a form, a technical dress, and a specific sanction, to the general sense of the community, is the true end of legislation.
In law nothing is certain but the expense.
Chancery, and certain other law courts, seem nothing; yet, in fact, they are, the worst of them, something: chimneys for the deviltry and contention of men to escape by.
Alas! how many causes that can plead well for themselves in the courts of Westminster, and yet in the general court of the universe, and free soul of man, have no word to utter!
We have no right to say that the universe is governed by natural laws, but only that it is governed according to natural laws.
Going to law is losing a cow for the sake of a cat.
The absolute justice of the state enlightened by the perfect reason of the state, that is law.
Possession is eleven points in the law.
A knowledge of the laws of our country is an highly useful, and I had almost said essential part of liberal and polite education.
True law is right reason conformably to nature, universal, unchangeable, eternal, whose commands urge us to duty, and whose prohibitions restrain us from evil.
Laws are silent in the midst of arms.
The law is the standard and guardian of our liberty; it circumscribes and defends it; but to imagine liberty without a law, is to imagine every man with his sword in his hand to destroy him, who is weaker than himself; and that would be no pleasant prospect to those who cry out most for liberty.
Reason is the life of law; nay, the common law itself is nothing else but reason.
A law overcharged with severity, like a blunderbuss overcharged with powder, will each of them grow rusty by disuse, and neither will be resorted to, from the shock and recoil that must inevitably follow their explosion.
The science of legislation is like that of medicine in one respect, viz.: that it is far more easy to point out what will do harm, than what will do good.
In civil jurisprudence it too often happens that there is so much law, that there is no room for justice, and that the claimant expires of wrong in the midst of right, as mariners die of thirst in the midst of water.
Law and equity are two things that God hath joined together, but which man has put asunder.
A natural law is a process, not a power; it is a method of operation, not an operator. A natural law, without God behind it, is no more than a glove without a hand in it.
The universal and absolute law is that natural justice which cannot be written down, but which appeals to the hearts of all. Written laws are formulas in which we endeavor to express as concisely as possible that which, under such or such determined circumstances, natural justice demands.
A good, contented, well-breakfasted juryman is a capital thing to get hold of. Discontented jurymen always find for the plaintiff.
To seek the redress of grievances by going to law, is like sheep running for shelter to a bramble bush.
Laws which are in advance of public sentiment are generally but a dead letter.
Law is often spoken of as uncertain; but the uncertainty is not so much in the law as in the evidence.
The laws of nature are but the ways in which the great almighty lawgiver operates; they have no efficiency except as channels of his will; rightly understood they cannot but be seen to agree with his written word.
To go to law is for two persons to kindle a fire, at their own cost, to warm others and singe themselves to cinders; and because they cannot agree as to what is truth and equity, they will both agree to unplume themselves that others may be decorated with their feathers.
Laws were made to restrain and punish the wicked; the wise and good do not need them as a guide, but only as a shield against rapine and oppression; they can live civilly and orderly, though there were no law in the world.
As the law dissolves all contracts which are without a valuable consideration, so a valuable consideration often dissolves the law.
The sparks of all the sciences in the world are taken up in the ashes of the law.
Law never does anything constructive. We have had enough of legislators promising to do that which laws can not do.
A countryman between two lawyers is like a fish between two cats.
When constabulary duty's to be done, a policeman's lot is not a happy one.
Good laws make it easier to do right and harder to do wrong.
The English laws punish vice; the Chinese laws do more, they reward virtue.
Laws grind the poor, and rich men rule the law.
Four out of five potential litigants will settle their disputes the first day they come together, if you will put the idea of arbitration into their heads.
Laws are the very bulwarks of liberty; they define every man's rights, and defend the individual liberties of all men.
Economic depression cannot be cured by legislative action or executive pronouncement. Economic wounds must be healed by the action of the cells of the economic body, the producers and consumers themselves.
So great is the force of laws, and of particular forms of government, and so little dependence have they on the humors and tempers of men, that consequences almost as general and certain may sometimes be deduced from them, as any which the mathematical sciences afford us.
It is impossible for men even to murder each other without statutes and maxims, and an idea of justice and honor.—War has its laws as well as peace.
The plaintiff and defendant in an action at law, are like two men ducking their heads in a bucket, and daring each other to remain longest under water.
To embarrass justice by a multiplicity of laws, or to hazard it by confidence in judges, are the opposite rocks on which all civil institutions have been wrecked, and between which legislative wisdom has never yet found an open passage.
Penal laws—by which every man's danger becomes every man's safety, and by which, though all are restrained, yet all are benefited.
The greatest of all injustice is that which goes under the name of law; and of all sorts of tyranny, the forcing the letter of the law against the equity is the most insupportable.
The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly.
Laws are the sovereigns of sovereigns.
The law of God is what we must do; the gospel is what God will give.
The law is a sort of hocus-pocus science that smiles in your face while it picks your pocket; and the glorious uncertainty of it is of more use to the professors than the justice of it.
Let but the public mind once become thoroughly corrupt, and all attempts to secure property, liberty, or life, by mere force of laws written on parchment, will be as vain as to put up printed notices in an orchard to keep off canker-worms.
The law can make you quit drinking; but it can't make you quit being the kind that needs a law to make you quit drinking.
Multitudes of laws are signs, either of much tyranny in the prince, or much rebellious disobedience in the subject.
The good need fear no law; it is his safety, and the bad man's awe.
Laws can discover sin, but not remove it.
The laws keep up their credit, not because they are all just, but because they are laws. This is the mystical foundation of their authority.
There have been many laws made by men which swerve from honesty, reason, and the dictates of nature. By the law of arms he is degraded from all honor who puts up with an affront; and by the civil law, he that takes vengeance for it, incurs a capital punishment; he that seeks redress by law for an affront is disgraced; and he that seeks redress not in this way is punished by the laws.
Law should be like death, which spares no one.
We should never create by law what can be accomplished by morality.
All things come to him that waits—even justice.
The people's safety is the law of God.
With us, law is nothing unless close, behind it stands a warm, living public opinion. Let that die or grow indifferent, and statutes was waste paper, lacking all executive force.
Where law ends, tyranny begins.
Consider the reason of the case, for nothing is law that is not reason.
No people were ever better than their laws, though many have been worse.
Use law and physic only in cases of necessity; they that use them otherwise, abuse themselves into weak bodies and light purses: they are good remedies, bad recreations, but ruinous habits.
We as a people seem to be losing all sense of respect for ourselves and our fellow men, with the result that in a thoroughly intolerant attitude we hesitate not a minute to secure an organized minority, or even a majority, to attempt by resolution or law to impose our will on a large body of people in matters where no moral wrong is involved and where liberty is curtailed.
The excess of sentiment, which is misleading in philanthropy and economics, grows acutely dangerous when it interferes with legislation, or with the ordinary rulings of morality.
Society cannot exist without law and order, and cannot advance except through vigorous innovators.
A prince who falleth out with laws, breaketh with his best friends.
The laws of nature are not, as some modern naturalists seem to suppose, iron chains, by which the living God, so to say, is bound hand and foot, but elastic cords rather, which he can lengthen or shorten at his sovereign will.
The reason of the law is the law.
Ignorance of the law excuses no man; not that all men know the law, but because it is an excuse every man will plead, and no man can tell how to confute him.
The law is past depth to those who, without heed, do plunge into it.
A fish that hangs in the net, like a poor man's right in the law, will hardly come out of it.
Pity is the virtue of the law, and none but tyrants use it cruelly.
We must not make a scarecrow of the law, setting it up to fear the birds of prey, and letting it keep one shape till custom make it their perch, and not their terror.
Laws are generally found to be nets of such a texture, as the little creep through, the great break through, and the middle size are alone entangled in.
Whoever goes to law, goes into a glass house, where he understands little or nothing of what he is doing; where he sees a small matter blown up into fifty times the size of its intrinsic contents, and through which, if he can perceive any other objects, he perceives them all discolored and distorted.
When I hear any man talk of an unalterable law, the only effect it produces on me is to convince me that he is an unalterable fool.
To make an empire durable, the magistrates must obey the laws, and the people the magistrates.
The Jews ruin themselves at their passover; the Moors, at their marriages; and the Christians, in their lawsuits.
Laws are like cobwebs, which may catch small flies, but let wasps and hornets break through.
When the state is most corrupt, then the laws are most multiplied.
There is no country in the world in which everything can be provided for by the laws, or in which political institutions can prove a substitute for common sense and public morality.
Laws are always unstable unless they are founded on the manners of a nation; and manners are the only durable and resisting power in a people.
The forms of law have always been the graves of buried liberties.
A multitude of laws in a country is like a great number of physicians, a sign of weakness and malady.
Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law, is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter from transgression.