Legal Cheek

Extract from Lord Denning book describing Sir William Blackstone as ‘too fat’ surfaces online

Statute books’ namesake apparently did ‘no exercise’ and ‘ate too much’

An extract from a book by law student hero Lord Denning has surfaced online, and in it he describes 18th century jurist Sir William Blackstone as “fat”.

A former judge and politician, Blackstone is widely regarded as one of the best legal minds in history. His book series, Commentaries on the Laws of England, gave a previously-unseen overview of English law and was republished numerous times.

While students around the country continue to engage with Blackstone using his namesake statute books, fellow law student favourite Denning has offered a very different perspective on the celebrated lawyer.

This perspective came in Denning’s book written in the 1980s, What Next in the Law, which was explored at length by Joshua Rozenberg in his latest Legal Cheek Journal article.

h/t: Instagram user @contra_ros

At page 18, under the heading “Too fat”, Denning said Blackstone “ate too much”, did “no exercise”, got “fatter and fatter”, and then died aged 57.

Well, Denning has never been one to mince his words.

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