Sir John Fortescue: On the Laws and Governance of England
Author(s): John Fortescue, Edited by Shelley Lockwood
Publication Date: 13/03/1997
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Sir John Fortescue CJKB (c.1395–c.1477) was undoubtedly the foremost English political scientist of the fifteenth century. This convenient volume brings together for the first time new editions of his two major works - In Praise of the Laws of England and The Governance of England - with references and suggestions for further reading for the student. In her introduction, Shelley Lockwood presents a clear reassessment of the work of John Fortescue and places these key texts in their historical and intellectual contexts. These works, arguably the earliest in English political thought, were written from the perspective of a self-consciously analytical and highly experienced lawyer and government official during a time of war and political upheaval. They form a coherent argument for justice against tyranny and afford unique insights into the law and governance of fifteenth-century England.