The article analyzes (and criticizes) the interpretation of a well-known page of Holmes’s The Path of the Law put forward by Frederick Schauer in his remarkable book Thinking like a Lawyer. As I try to point out, indeed, Schauer’s attempt to interpret the tone of mockery displayed by Holmes in telling the famous story of the Vermont Justice of the Peace as an evident symptom of his scarcely Realistic, outof- date conception of relevant legal categories is both ungenerous and misleading. Moreover, if better understood, Holmes’s thinking about this crucial topic, far from being a disappointing remnant of legal classicism, shows his seminal contribution to the rising of the American legal Realism.
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