London: Printed for Knight and Lacey, 1825.
First edition. Two hand-colored engraved plates. 8, 111, , 24 pp. 1 vols. 8vo. The Jury of Scottish Common Sense. Boards, uncut, rebacked with new black cloth spine. Early stab marks in inner margin, one signature sprung Item #221769
Fletcher was the Scottish-born minister of the United presbyterian Church, who In April 1824, was prosecuted in the civil and ecclesiastical courts for breach of promise to marry Miss Eliza Dick. According to the DNB, "In the king's bench no verdict was given, but in the meeting of the United Associate Synod at Edinburgh he was suspended from the exercise of his office and from church fellowship. The trial and suspension provoked a spate of publications ..."
One of those publications was this very amusing satire of the trail of the Reverend, before a "Court of Common Sense" with a 'special jury" consisting of a dozen illustrious Scots, including Sir Walter Scott, who was elected Foreman; Sir James Mackintosh; J. W. Croker; Thomas Campbell; Thomas Moore, Samuel Rogers; John Galt; and William Blackwood. Much of the fun consists of the conversations between the members of the jury, wehn called upon to examin a witness. The Jury's final verdict, after a deliberation of 5 minuttes, is delivered by the forman, Sir Walter Scott: "My Lord, we unanimously find the defendant Guilty upon the whole counts of the indictment."
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