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Lion & The Throne [Paperback]

Catherine Drinker Bowen

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Book Description

24 Jan 1991
Sir Edward Coke was perhaps the pre-eminent jurist during the reigns of Queen Elizabeth and King James of England. He was the prime author of the Petition of Right, so this biography is simultaneously the story of the roots of our form of free government. But the man who rose to be the Chief Justice of England was eventually dismissed from the bench in disgrace.

Product details

  • Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown US; Reissue edition (24 Jan 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316103934
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316103930
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 14 x 3.8 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,534,703 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and informative 3 Dec 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
One of the best books ever written about lawyers, judges and prosecutors. Anyone familier with the legal system will find that little has changed in 400 years. Catherine Bowen was a fine writer and an excellent "popular" historian. Her biography of Lord Coke not only describes a critical period in English history, but also illuminates the origins of the concepts of ordered liberty that eventually found their way into the US Constitution. Anyone interested in either law or Anglo/American history would enjoy this book.
15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Origins of Common Law and History of Those Times 11 Jan 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I loved this book, both for its history of the period and its history of English Common Law, with Sir Edward's role in the formation of that Law. Couldn't put it down.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Monarchy's John Marshall 24 Mar 2013
By Joseph H. Stans - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A capturing historical work that reads like a novel. The subject is Sir Eduard Coke within a picture of the political, intellectual and religious times is woven into the a narrative. As Chief Justice on England during the heart of the enlightenment his decisions shaped the thinking of our Revolutionary forefathers and
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A model of serious popular history 7 Dec 2011
By Charles Perry - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Coke was a major figure in Elizabethan and early Stuart England and a champion of the liberties that American has inherited from England's long struggle with feudal power. Bowen tells his story in a fluid, readable style and evokes the strangeness (to our minds) of Coke's England. The first detail that made me gasp was her description of Westminster Hall, where four major courts met (simultaneously in one big room). It had been built in the 11th century by William the Conqueror's son and was used for many purposes over the centuries -- in the mid-20th century, workmen found a tennis ball in the rafters.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and readable biography of a towering legal giant 2 Feb 2014
By Schmerguls - Published on Amazon.com
This is a carefully researched biography, and tells well the important story of a giant in legal history. In the closing years of Queen Elizabeth I's reign and the opening years of James I's reign Coke was a prosecutor, handling the trials of Essex, Raleigh, and the Gunpowder plotters. Then he became a judge and his most important work was performed as he became a vigorous opponent of arbitrary royal power, deciding such legal milestones as Bonham's Case (which laid the foundation for judicial review). He was an opponent of Sir Francis Bacon, and while he was ousted by Bacon he lived to see Bacon fall--a fall Bacon eminently deserved. The book is a lot more interesting than you might expect, though it does help to know some law.
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