The Code of Procedure.—First stage of the Judicial Business.—Second stage of the Judicial Business.

We have now, therefore, stated, what the limits of this discourse enable us to adduce, on the subject of the main body of the law; the enactments of the legislature with respect to rights, and with respect to those acts by which rights are violated. It remains that we consider that subsidiary branch of law, by which an agency is constituted for the purpose of carrying those enactments into effect. The inquiry here is, 1. what are the operations essential to that agency; 2. by what agents are they most likely to be well performed; and 3. what are the best securities that can be taken for the good conduct of those agents.

It most significantly illustrates the manner in which ignorance gropes its way in the dark, to observe, that the agency, the sole end of which is to carry into execution the civil and penal laws, was created first, and was in operation for ages, before the idea of the other branches of law was even tolerably framed. It is also worthy of remark, that the men, whose wisdom rules our affairs, are in the habit of calling the mode in which ignorance gropes its way in the dark, by the name of experience; the mode of acting upon a plan, and with forethought, by the names of theory and speculation.

There is instruction, in observing the mode, in which this inverted course of law-making was pursued. Men disputed; and their disputes were attended with the most destructive consequences. Originally, the king, at the head of the military force, and his subordinates, each at the head of a section of that force, interfered in those disputes. After a time, the king appointed functionaries, under the name of judges, for that particular service. Those judges decided, without any rule, by their own discretion. The feelings of the community, grounded upon their experience of what tended to good and evil upon the whole, pointed vaguely to certain things as right, to other things as wrong; and to these the judge, as often as he was bona fide, conformed his decision. The mode was similar both in arbitrating, and in punishing.

As punishing, especially in the severer cases, was an act which made a vivid impression upon the mind, the mode in which that act had been performed in previous cases was apt to be remembered: of the several modes, that which was most approved by the public would naturally be followed the most frequently; and at last there would be a species of scandal, if it was unnecessarily departed from. In this way a uniformity, more or less perfect, was established, in punishing the more heinous offences; and in regard to them custom first established what had some small portion of the attributes of a law.

In those cases in which, without a call for punishment, the authoritative termination of a dispute was all that was required, the experience of what was necessary, not only for any degree of mutual comfort, but even for the means of subsistence, soon established a few leading points of uniformity. Thus, when a man had cultivated a piece of ground, which belonged to nobody more peculiarly than to himself, it was evidently necessary that the crop should be considered as belonging to him; otherwise, no crops would be raised, and the community would be deprived of the means of subsistence.

These general feelings, with the remembrance, more or less perfect, of what had been done in similar cases, were the only guide; and it is surprising to what an extent, over the surface of the whole globe, law has, in all ages, remained in that state of imperfect existence, if, indeed, with any propriety, it can be called a state of existence. In every part of Asia, and in all ages, law has remained in that state of existence, or non-existence. In Europe, where, at a pretty early period, it became the practice to record in writing the proceedings of the judges, the natural propensity of referring to the past as a rule for the present, begat in time a species of obligation of being directed by the examples which had already been set. This created a uniformity and certainty, which, however imperfect, afforded something better than the arbitrary proceedings of Asiatic judges. Yet this was a benefit which had a dreadful alloy. A body, not of law, but of decisions, out of which, on each particular occasion, a law for that particular occasion, as out of the crude ore, was to be smelted, hammered, and wire-drawn, was the natural material out of which to manufacture a system of chicane. How accurately the system of law, in the several nations of Europe, has conformed to the character of a system of chicane, is matter of present and lamentable experience. The uncertainty, the delay, the vexation and expence, and that immorality of the worst species with which they inundate the community, are not the only evils, great as they are, of laws constructed upon such a plan. A system of laws, so constructed, becomes an instrument of conservation for the barbarous customs and ideas of the times in which they were engendered; and infests society with the evils of an age, which it has left behind.

To conceive the operations which are necessary to give effect to the enactments of the legislature, it is necessary to conceive the occasions which call for them.

When the legislature has established rights, so long as there is no dispute about those rights, and so long as there is no complaint of any violation of them, so long there is no occasion for any agency to give to the enactments of the legislature their effect. The moment, however, one person says, the right to that object is mine, and another person says no, but the right to that object is mine; or the moment any man complains that such or such a right belonging to him another man has violated, that moment occasion for the agency in question begins.

It is evident, also, that the operations necessary to give effect to the enactments of the legislature are confined to those two occasions; namely, that on which a right is disputed, and that on which it has been violated. On the occasions on which a right is disputed, it is requisite to determine to whom it belongs. On the occasions on which a right has been violated, it is sometimes only required to compel reparation to the injured party; sometimes it is necessary, besides, to inflict punishment upon the offender. The question is, What are the operations required for these several results?

Where a right is disputed, all possible cases may be resolved into that of A who affirms, and B who denies. That right is mine, says A, it is not yours, says B.

The first question to be asked of A is, which, among those facts, which the legislature has determined shall give commencement to rights, happened in such a manner as to give commencement to that which is claimed as a right by him.

If no such fact is affirmed, the right does not exist. If some such fact is affirmed, it may be met by the opponent in one of two ways. B either may deny the fact, and affirm that the right never had a commencement; or he may allow the fact, and admit that the right had a commencement, but affirm that there had subsequently happened one of those facts which put an end to rights: admitting that A bought the horse, and had a right to him in the month of July, he might affirm that A sold him again in August, and by that transaction put an end to his right.

When B meets the affirmation of A in the first way, that is, by denying the commencement of the right, he may do it in either of two ways. He may deny the investitive fact which A affirms, or not denying the fact, he may affirm some antecedent fact which deprived it of its investitive power. Thus, if A affirmed that he got the property by occupancy, B may affirm that it was not open to occupancy, but the property of another person. If A affirmed that he got the property by succession to his father, B may allow the fact of the succession, but affirm that the property did not belong to the father of A at the time of his death.

Whenever the legislature has accurately determined what are the facts which shall give commencement, and what those which shall give termination to a right, the whole confused and intricate mass of what in English law is called Pleading, reduces itself to those clear and simple elements. A begins, by affirming some one of the facts which gives commencement to a right. B may deny this fact directly. A affirms contract for example, B denies it; and then, of course, comes the evidence: Or, instead of denying it, B may affirm an antecedent fact which deprived the fact affirmed by A of its investitive force; or he may affirm a subsequent fact, which put an end to the right. In those two cases, in which B affirms a new fact, A must be called upon for a reply, in other words, asked whether he admits or denies it. If he admits, there is an end, of course, to the claim of A. If he denies, then again we have affirmation and denial upon a matter of fact, which is to be determined by the production of evidence.

This is the first part of the proceeding, neither intricate nor obscure. The next is, the adduction of evidence. A fact is disputed; affirmed on the one side, denied on the other. A produces evidence to prove the fact, B produces evidence to disprove it. The decision is on the one side or the other, and the dispute is at an end.

If both parties obey the decision, there is no occasion for another act. If the losing party disobeys, force is necessary to compel obedience. This is called execution, and terminates the agency required.

It is needless to particularise a penal proceeding; all the possible varieties of which fall under one or other of the cases illustrated.

Thus, when a man is charged with a crime, the prosecutor affirms one of the acts violating rights, to which punishment is annexed by the legislator. The defendant can meet this affirmation in one of two ways only. First, he may deny the act, and then the second stage of proceeding, the adduction of evidence, immediately takes place. Or, not denying the act, he may affirm some previous act, which prevented it from having the effect of violating a right. Not denying the fact of taking the horse out of the field with a view to appropriate him, he may affirm a previous purchase, gift, &c. The adduction of evidence has nothing peculiar in the case of a penal proceeding at law. In the last stage, that of execution, the peculiar act of inflicting punishment is required.

Having thus a view, though very summary, of the operations required, we shall be the better able to judge of the agents necessary for the performance.

The stages, we have observed, are three. The first is that in which the plaintiff adduces the fact on which he relies, and is met by the defendant either with a denial of the fact, or the affirmation of another fact, which, to maintain the suit, the plaintiff must deny. The second is that in which evidence, to prove or disprove the fact on which the affirmation and denial of the parties ultimately rests, is adduced and decided upon. The third is that in which the operations are performed necessary for giving effect to the sentence of the judge.

What is desirable in the operations of the first stage is, 1st, That the affirmations and negations with respect to the facts should be true; and 2dly, That the facts themselves should be such as really to have the quality ascribed to them. For the first of these purposes, all the securities, which the nature of the case admits of, should be taken, for the veracity of the parties. There is the same sort of reason that the parties should speak truly, as that the witnesses should speak truly. They should speak, therefore, under all the sanctions and penalties of a witness. They cannot, indeed, in many cases, swear to the existence or non-existence of the fact; which may not have been within their cognizance. But they can always swear to the state of their belief with respect to it. For the second of the above purposes, namely, that it may be known whether the facts affirmed and denied are such as to possess the quality ascribed to them, two things are necessary; the first is, that all investitive and devestitive facts, and all acts by which rights are violated, should have been clearly predetermined by the legislature, in other words, that there should be a well-made code; the second is, that the affirmations and denials with respect to them should be made in the presence of somebody capable of telling exactly whether they have the quality ascribed to them or not. The judge is a person with this knowledge, and to him alone can the power of deciding on matters so essential to the result of the inquiry be entrusted.

To have this important part of the business done, then, in the best possible way, it is necessary that the parties should meet in the very first instance in the presence of the judge. A is asked, upon his oath, to mention the fact which he believes confers upon him or has violated his right. If it is not a fact capable of having that effect, he is told so, and his claim is at an end. If it is a fact capable of having that effect, B is asked whether he denies it; or whether he affirms another fact, either one of those, which, happening previously, would prevent it from having its imputed effect, or in a civil case one of those which, happening subsequently, would put an end to the right to which the previous fact gave commencement. If he affirmed only a fact which could have neither of these effects, the pretension of B would be without foundation.

Done in this manner, the clearness, the quickness, and the certainty of the whole proceeding are demonstrated. Remarkable it is, that every one of the rules for doing it in the best possible manner, is departed from by the English law, and that, to the greatest possible extent. No security whatsoever is taken that the parties shall speak the truth; they are left with perfect impunity, aptly by Mr. Bentham denominated the mendacity-licence, to tell as many lies as they please. The legislature has never enumerated and defined the facts which give commencement, or put a period to or violate rights; the subject, therefore, remains in a state of confusion, obscurity, and uncertainty. And, lastly, the parties do not make their affirmations and negations before the judge, who would tell them whether the facts which they allege could or could not have the virtue ascribed to them; they make them in secret, and in writing, each along with his attorney, who has a motive to make them not in the way most conducive to the interests of his client, but in the way most conducive to his own interests and those of his confederates, from the bottom to the top of the profession. First, A, the plaintiff, writes what is called the declaration, an instrument for the most part full of irrelevant absurdity and lies; and this he deposits in an office, where the attorney of B, the defendant, obtains a copy of it, on paying a fee. Next B, the defendant, meets the declaration of A, by what is called a plea, the form of which is not less absurd than that of the declaration. The plea is written and put into the same office, out of which the attorney of the opposite party obtains a copy of it on similar terms. The plea may be of two sorts; either, 1st, a dilatory plea, as it is called; or, 2dly, a plea to the action. To this plea the plaintiff may make a replication, proceeding through the same process. To the replication the defendant may put in a rejoinder. The plaintiff may answer the rejoinder by a sur-rejoinder. This, again, the defendant may oppose by a rebutter, and the plaintiff may answer him by a sur-rebutter.

All this takes place without being once seen or heard of by the judge; and no sooner has it come before him, than some flaw is perhaps discovered in it, whereupon he quashes the whole, and sends it to be performed again from the beginning.

This mischievous mess, which exists in defiance and mockery of reason, English lawyers inform us, is a strict, and pure, and beautiful exemplification of the rules of logic. This is a common language of theirs. It is a language which clearly demonstrates the state of their minds. All that they see in the system of pleading is the mode of performing it. What they know of logic is little more than the name.

The agency necessary for the performance of this portion of the business, is some person, who, when he hears a fact affirmed and denied, can tell whether it is one of those facts to which the legislature has attached the power of giving commencement or of putting a period to rights. It is evident, that on such occasion, any one person, with the requisite knowledge, attention, and probity, is as competent to the task as a hundred. If he is single, the attention and probity is likely to be the greatest, as responsibility is not weakened merely, it is almost annihilated by being shared. There should be one judge, therefore, and not more, to superintend that branch of procedure which consists of pleading.

The agency best adapted to the business of the second stage of judicature, is that which next demands our attention. It is the business of taking evidence; in other words, the doing all that is necessary to ascertain whether the disputed fact happened or did not happen.

The subject of evidence is a matter of complexity in the detail. And where any thing complex is to be stated in words, there is always difficulty in the expression, how plain soever the ideas. Such general considerations, however, as we can even here adduce, will, we hope, throw sufficient light upon the subject, to leave no doubt with respect to the conclusions which we have it in view to establish. This is one of the topics, connected with law, which Mr. Bentham has exhausted, though a small part only of what he has written upon it has yet seen the light.[1]

With respect to all facts, legally operative, that is, which give or take away rights, it is desirable that evidence, amounting to proof, should, if possible, always exist. With respect to a great proportion of them, it is in the power of the legislature to take measures, that evidence of them shall be collected at the moment of their happening, and shall be preserved. This is the case with all those of which an evidentiary writing can be made and preserved by registration; all contracts, births, deaths, marriages, and so on. The proportion is really very great of the whole number of facts, legally operative, in regard to which a legislature, by proper means, might secure the existence of evidence, and to that extent might either prevent disputes, or render the decision of them easy. That so little of this most important and obvious work has any where been done, only shows how ill the legislatures of the world have hitherto performed their duty. It is in the power of the legislature, by a proper classification, to have an accurate formulary, for the different species of contracts, wills, and other evidentiary writings. Those formularies properly made and printed with blanks to fill up, would render the business of Conveyancing, which, in England, is a boundless, trackless, and almost impenetrable jungle; abounding with expence, with delay and vexation to parties, with wealth and almost boundless power over the fortunes of other men to lawyers; a thing of the greatest simplicity, certainty, and ease.

Into the question of what might be, and ought to be, done by the legislature, for making and preserving evidence of the principal facts by which rights are made to begin or to end, we cannot enter at length, on the present occasion. The great importance of the subject is evident from what we have thus shortly advanced.

The business of him, who is only called upon to determine whether a disputed fact did or did not happen, is, to make the best use of all the evidence which exists; whether it were, or were not, desirable, that more had been made to exist. For the best use of that which exists, three things are necessary:

1st, That the whole of it should be made to bear, that is, should be taken and applied.

2dly, That it should be taken in those circumstances which are most conducive to trust-worthiness.

3dly, That the proper value should be set upon each article, and upon the whole.

1. That the evidence may be taken as completely as possible, two things are necessary. The first is, that the judge should have power to send for, and to compel the attendance of, all persons and things which may be capable of affording evidence. The second is, that the evidence should all be taken, and nothing be omitted or lost.

It is not necessary here to enter into any details with respect to the first of those requisites. The necessity of the power is obvious, and the end to be attained is so precise and perspicuous, that there can be no difficulty in conceiving the mode of putting together and applying the means. There is no limit, it is obvious, to the physical power which should be placed at the disposal of the judge. He ought to have the right of calling upon every man, upon the whole community, to aid him in any act which is necessary to the performance of any part of his judicial duty; because any force, opposed to the performance of that duty, there ought to be a force sufficient promptly to overcome. It is convenient, however, to the community, instead of being liable to be called upon, individually, for the performance of the ordinary services auxiliary to the business of the judge, to provide him with a proper number of officers, paid for attending to execute his commands. Their principal business, as regards this stage of the judicial proceedings, is, to serve notice upon any persons whose own presence, or that of any writing or other thing which they may possess, is required by the judge. Persons or things, subjected immediately to the operations of judicature, have a particular name in English. They are said to be forthcoming, a word which has an exact equivalent in few other languages, and is exceedingly appropriate and useful. It is of the greatest convenience, when a concrete term, the use of which is very frequent, has an abstract term corresponding to it; as good, has goodness; hard, hardness, and so on. There was not any word in the language corresponding in this way to forthcoming. Mr. Bentham, perceiving the great need of it, made the term forthcomingness; not exceptionable on the score either of harshness or obscurity. The small wits thought proper to laugh at him. We shall, nevertheless—sorry at the same time that we cannot supply a defect in the language without offending them, make use of the word; in which we find great appropriateness and great convenience. This particular branch, therefore, of the judicial agency is that which relates to forthcomingness; and forthcomingness is required for two purposes, both for evidence, and for justiciability; for evidence, that a true decision may be passed; for justiciability, that the sentence of the judge may not fail of its intended effect.

So much with respect to the forthcomingness of evidence. The second condition, required to give the decision the benefit of all existing evidence is, that the whole should be taken, and that not any part of it which can be taken without preponderant inconvenience should be excluded and lost.

Of the several articles of evidence, some will always be of more importance, some of less; and some may be of very little importance; but whether of little or of much, it is always desirable that all should be taken, and every the smallest portion counted for what it is worth. The discovery of truth is promoted by taking advantage of every thing which tends to throw light upon the subject of dispute.

These propositions, it may appear to be useless, indeed impertinent, formally to state. They are too evident, it may be said, to be disputed, and too important to be overlooked. Important as they are, and undisputed by all the rest of the world, they are not only disputed, but trampled upon by lawyers, especially English lawyers. They have unhappily established a set of rules in direct opposition to them. These rules they applaud in all forms of expression, and celebrate as guards and fences of all that is dear to mankind.

In all causes, they have determined, that persons so and so situated, things so and so situated, though apt to be pregnant with information beyond all other persons and things, shall not be admitted as sources of evidence. Thus, in English law, we have incompetency of witnesses, that is, exclusion of them, 1st, From want of understanding; 2dly, From defect of religious principle; 3dly, From infamy of character; 4thly, From interest. These are undisguised modes of exclusion; besides which, there is an extensive assortment of disguised modes. Under this title comes the rule, that only the best evidence be given which the nature of the case admits of; according to which, it often happens that the only evidence which can be had is excluded. Under this title also falls the rule, making certain kinds of evidence conclusive, by which proceeding all other evidence is excluded. To the same list belongs the rule, that hearsay evidence is not admissible. The rules, so extensive in their application, by which writings are wholly rejected, only because they want certain formularies, are rules of exclusion; and so are the limitations with respect to time, and to number of witnesses. Into the very extensive subject, however, of the absurdity and mischievousness of the rules of evidence in English law, we cannot pretend so much as to enter. A remarkable exemplification of them was afforded on the trial of Warren Hastings, to which, for this purpose, the reader may be referred. (See Mill's History of British India, Book VI. Chap. ii.)

The only conceivable reasons for the exclusion of evidence are three:

1. Irrelevancy.
2. Inconvenience in obtaining and producing.
3. Danger of deception.

With regard to irrelevancy the decision is clear. What has no tendency either to prove or disprove the point in question, it would be loss of time to receive.

With regard to inconvenience, it is no doubt liable to happen, that when all the good which can be expected from the obtaining of a lot of evidence is compared with the evil of the delay, cost, and vexation, inseparable from the obtaining of it, the evil may be more than an overmatch for the good. In all such cases, it is expedient that the lot of evidence should be foregone.

As a guard against the danger of deception, it is equally certain that no evidence ought ever to be excluded. An account of all the reasons by which the absurdity of exclusion on this ground is demonstrated, and of the wide and deplorable mischief which, in the vulgar systems, is produced by it, would be far too extensive for the contracted limits of the present discourse. Reasons, however, decisive of the question, present themselves so obviously, that hardly any man, with an ordinary understanding, not fettered by prejudice, can look at the subject without perceiving them.

If evidence is to be received from no source from which evidence, liable to produce deception, is capable of coming, evidence must not be received at all. Evidence must be received from sources whence false evidence, as well as true, is liable to flow. To refuse all information from such sources, is not the way by which a knowledge of the truth can be obtained. This is the way to make sure of not having that knowledge. The means of obtaining it are, to receive evidence from every possible source, and to separate the bad from the good, under all those securities, and by the guidance of all those marks, of which understanding and attention know how to avail themselves.

It is not enough to say, we will receive information from those sources only which are least likely to yield deceptious evidence, refuse to receive it from those which are most likely. You are obliged to receive it from sources differing in almost all possible degrees of likelihood. Where are you to draw the line of separation? Is not the same discernment which guards you against the danger of false information from the sources which you deem the least likely to yield it, sufficient to guard you against it from those sources which you deem the most likely to do so? In fact it will be still more sufficient; because in this case you will be much more apt to be upon your guard. The very best information is, in truth, liable to be derived from the very worst of sources,—from a man who, you know, would not tell you one word of truth, if he could help it.

The securities that a man will give true information, independently of those artificial securities which the legislature can apply equally to all, are, 1st, Intelligence, 2dly, Probity, 3dly, Freedom from interest. Suppose that one, or two, or all of these securities are wanting; it only follows, that what he states should be heard with a proportional distrust. It may still be of the utmost importance to the discovery of the truth that he should be heard. Hear him with the proper allowances. This must always be more favourable to the discovery of the truth than that he should not be heard at all. His testimony may appear, when heard, to be utterly unworthy of credence. But that could not be known till it was heard and examined. It might have so been, that it was not only worthy of credence, but completed the proof of a fact of the greatest possible importance. That a man should not be heard as a witness, on account of his religious creed, is an absurdity which we cannot descend to notice.

2. The second of the three things which we found necessary, as above, for making the best use judicially of whatever evidence to the fact in question, exists, was, that it should be taken under those circumstances, which are most conducive to trust-worthiness. Those circumstances are constituted by the artificial securities, which arrangements can be made to apply. The following enumeration of them has been made by Mr. Bentham (Introduction to the Rationale of Evidence, p. 54), and appears to be complete.

1. Punishment.
2. Shame.
3. Interrogation, including counter-interrogation.
4. Counter evidence,—admission of.
5. Writing,—use made of it for giving permanence, &c. to evidence.
6. Publicity,—to most purposes and on most occasions.
7. Privacy,—to some purposes, and on some occasions.

For developing the import of these several securities, we can afford to say nothing. The principal operation of the judicial functionary in this part of the business is, to preside over the interrogation; to see that it is properly and completely performed. The question, then, what is the sort of agency best adapted for the performance of this part of the task of taking evidence is not difficult to answer. There is nothing in it which one man, with the proper intellectual and moral qualifications, is not as capable of performing, as any number of men.

3. All the existing evidence being collected and received, it only remains that the proper value should be attached to the several portions, and a corresponding decision pronounced.

It is sufficiently evident that, for the performance of this duty, no very precise instructions can be laid down. The value which belongs to an article of evidence often depends on minute and almost indescribable circumstances; and the result must be left to the sagacity and conscience of the judge.

At the same time, however, service to this end, and of the greatest importance, may be, and, of course, ought to be, rendered by the legislature. The different marks of trust-worthiness may, to a certain extent of particularity, be very correctly described. This being done, the difference between the value of any two lots of evidence, to which those marks attach, may be very exactly ascertained. One has a certain number of the marks of trust-worthiness, as laid down by the legislature; another has all these and so many more; the result is clear. It is evident, that as far, in this respect, as experience and foresight can go, nothing should be left undone by the legislature.

Another important service can be rendered by the legislature; and that is, to provide an accurate language for the judge; a language in which he can express precisely the degree of value which he allots to each article of evidence, and to the whole. Various expedients may be adopted for this purpose. A very obvious one is, to fix upon some particular, well known, article of evidence, the value of which all men appreciate equally; the clear testimony, for example, of a man of the ordinary degree of intelligence and probity, as a standard. Is the value to be expressed, which the judge attaches to any other article of evidence? If inferior to the standard, it falls below it by so many degrees, one, two, three, four: If superior, it rises above it by so many.

Having provided an accurate language, the legislature should take security that it be used; and admit of no vague and general expressions in the account of the value which the judge attaches to each article of the evidence on which he grounds his decision.

At the same time that the legislature insists upon the use of precise language in stating the value of evidence, it should insist upon reasons; upon receiving from the judge a precise statement of the grounds upon which he attaches such a value, and no other, to each and every article of evidence; that is, upon receiving a reference, as exact as language can give, to each of the circumstances which contributed to suggest to him that particular estimate which he says he has formed.

Of the importance of all these expedients we presume that no illustration is required.

We come now to the third and last stage of the business of judicature; when all that remains is to carry into effect the sentence of the judge.

When they, upon whom the sentence operates, are willing to obey, all that is necessary is, to afford them notice of what it requires them to perform. In well ordered countries, all but a very insignificant number will be found to be cases of this description. When opposition is to be overcome, a physical force must be provided, sufficient for the purpose. As there seems nothing mysterious in determining how this should be formed, and under what rules it should act, to secure the ends for which it is provided, with the smallest possible amount of collateral evil, we shall here take leave of the subject.

Note edit

  1. We are happy to say, there are hopes that this part of Mr. Bentham's writings will soon be presented to the public by Mr. Dumont, the first of translators and redacteurs, in that happy form which he has given to other portions of that philosopher's manuscripts.