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"I know, may it please your honour, the jury may do so; but I do likewise know they may do otherwise. I know they have the right, beyond all dispute, to determine both the law and the fact; and where they do not doubt the law, they ought to do so. This of leaving it to the judgment of the Court whether the words are libelous or not in effect renders juries useless (to say no worse) in many cases."

Andrew Hamilton
(c.1676-1741) Scottish lawyer in colonial America
August 4, 1735, made to the jury as defense counsel at the seditious libel trial of John Peter Zenger; Rex. V. Zenger, How. St. Tr. 17:675 (1735); quoted in Stanley N. Katz, Introduction to James Alexander, A Brief Narrative Of The Case And Trial Of John Peter Zenger, 3-5 (Stanley N. Katz ed. 1963).

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