Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 25.djvu/59

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James Louis Petigru.


"'When this was done,' continued Forrest, 'I ordered my men to come forward and take possession of the arms.'

"When Streight saw they were barely four hundred, he did rare! demanded to have his arms back and that we should fight it out. I just laughed at him and patted him on the shoulder, and said, 'Ah Colonel, all is fair in love and war, you known."

James Louis Petigru,

The Life and Character of.

The lives of successful and distinguished lawyers are always interesting. Success at the bar in a high degree, involves and implies mental activity and diligent research. There must be preliminary preparation both of an academic and a professional nature. Assuming a fair degree of the first we may enlarge a little on the second. The great exponent and apostle of the law, Sir William Blackstone, has to be studied. The principles which he discusses and elaborates have to be read, digested, and stored away in the mind. The student has to familiarize himself with Story and Adam's Equity, Smith's Mercantile Law, or some other work of like nature, has to be mastered. The statute law of the State has to be learned, works of pleading and practice must be perused and made part of the mental equipment. This preparation and these books necessitate the exercise of the intellectual faculties their expansion and development. Practice of the profession calls for more. Cases have to be studied. Principles of the law as they have been expounded and adjudicated in the courts, have to be learned. Nice discriminations of thought have to be traced through their various amifications and followed out to their logical conclusions and their application to facts. And then there must be a wide range of general knowledge, a familiarity with practical business, and a deep insight into human nature. One must know how to unravel sophistries, to detect truth from falsehood, and to read character from the lineaments of the face. A mind developed amid such environments as these, must itself be an object of interest. How interesting therefore, must a lawyer be who has a training such as that set forth above, and who has clothed and armed himself with a vast array of facts, llustrations, and incidents!