Though the Heavens May Fall: The Landmark Trial That Led to the End of Human Slavery
The case of James Somerset, an escaped slave, in June of 1772 in London's Westminster Hall was a decisive turning point in human history. Steven Wise has uncovered fascinating new revelations in this case, which statesmen of the time threatened would bring the economy of the British Empire to a crashing halt. In a gripping, hour-by-hour narrative of the trial and the inflamed participants, Wise leads the reader to the extraordinary and unexpected decision by the great conservative judge, Lord Mansfield, which led to the United States' own abolition movement. As the case drew to a close, and defenders of slavery pleaded with him to maintain the system, Mansfield's reply has resounded down through more than two centuries: "Let Justice be done, though the Heavens may fall."
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - JBD1 - LibraryThing
A thorough account of the Somerset case; Wise manages to make the very complex legal wrangling over the state of slaves in England into an eminently readable narrative. Excellently researched and cited too, which always helps. Read full review
Though the heavens may fall: the landmark trial that led to the end of human slaveryUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Legal historian Wise examines how 18th-century English abolitionists created legal arguments to challenge slavery. Granville Sharp was a leading abolitionist whose legal failures and eventual success ... Read full review
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Though the Heavens May Fall: The Landmark Trial that Led to the End of Human ...
Steven M. Wise
No preview available - 2006