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Enlightenment, Legal Education, and CritiqueSelected Essays on the History of Scots Law, Volume 2$
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John W. Cairns

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780748682133

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748682133.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021

The Influence of Smith’s Jurisprudence on Legal Education in Scotland

The Influence of Smith’s Jurisprudence on Legal Education in Scotland

(p.64) 3 The Influence of Smith’s Jurisprudence on Legal Education in Scotland*
Enlightenment, Legal Education, and Critique

John W Cairns

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter examines the influence of Adam Smith's jurisprudence on legal education in Scotland. By the middle years of the eighteenth century, natural law thinking had come to dominate the moral philosophy curriculum in the University of Edinburgh and the University of Glasgow. Of primary importance in this development was Gershom Carmichael's adoption of Samuel von Pufendorf's treatise De officio hominis et civis in Glasgow in the 1690s. Following Pufendorf, Carmichael redefined moral philosophy as natural law. The chapter argues that Smith's Lectures on Jurisprudence showed how law could be taught as a dynamic historical process and that he revitalised the teaching of natural law as a potential discipline for lawyers. It explains how Smith turned natural law from an abstract ahistorical discipline into a concrete, historical explanation and critique of law.

Keywords:   legal education, Adam Smith, jurisprudence, natural law, moral philosophy, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, Gershom Carmichael, Lectures on Jurisprudence, lawyers

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