C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


The cold neutrality of an impartial judge.


  • When a man’s life is under debate,
  • The judge can ne’er too long deliberate.
  • Dryden.

    A wise judge, by the craft of the law, was never seduced from its purpose.


  • What can innocence hope for,
  • When such as sit her judges are corrupted?
  • Massinger.

    It is better that a judge should lean on the side of compassion than severity.


  • Heaven is above all yet; there sits a judge,
  • That no king can corrupt.
  • Shakespeare.

  • The hungry judges soon the sentence sign,
  • And wretches hang that jurymen may dine.
  • Pope.

    Let the judges answer to the question of law, and the jurors to the matter of fact.

    Law Maxim.

    A corrupt judge is not qualified to inquire into the truth.


    Four things belong to a judge: to hear courteously, to answer wisely, to consider soberly, and to decide impartially.


    If judges would make their decisions just, they should behold neither plaintiff, defendant, nor pleader, but only the cause itself.


    Judges ought to be more learned than witty, more reverent than plausible, and more advised than confident. Above all things, integrity is their portion and proper virtue.


    Judges are but men, and are swayed like other men by vehement prejudices. This is corruption in reality, give it whatever other name you please.

    David Dudley Field.

    A good judge should never boast of his power, because he can do nothing but what he can do justly: he is not the master, but the minister of the law. Authority without virtue is a very dangerous state.

    Thomas Wilson.

  • And then, the justice;
  • In fair round belly, with good capon lin’d,
  • With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
  • Full of wise saws and modern instances,
  • And so he plays his part.
  • Shakespeare.

  • He who the sword of heaven will bear
  • Should be as holy as severe;
  • Pattern in himself to know,
  • Grace to stand, and virtue go;
  • More nor less to others paying
  • Than by self-offenses weighing.
  • Shame to him, whose cruel striking
  • Kills for faults of his own liking!
  • Shakespeare.