``Judge A. has a noble soul'', was one day said to me by one of his friends: ``this is what he told me was the difference between himself and Judge B. Consider him well: he will never listen to a single word which has the slightest connexion with any suit which may be brought before him, unless in open court: he fears lest he should be misled, so weak is he: he has told me so himself. Whilst, as to me, a suitor might whisper in my ear, from morning till night, and might as well have been talking to a deaf man.''
I would not insinuate the least suspicion against the valorous judge; had I been constrained to form one, it would have been dissipated by the elogium he bestowed upon his friend. The heroism of Lord Hale, the model of the English judges, took a contrary direction. It had been customary, when upon the circuit, for the judge to receive from the sheriff a certain number of loaves of sugar. On one occasion, a sheriff who happened to have a suit which was to be tried before him, waited upon his lordship, and, as was customary presented his sugar: Hale would not receive it. The other judge, if he had been consistent, would have taken sugar from everybody.
General rule.---When an honest man is desirous of establishing his honesty, he ought to employ proofs which will serve only for this purpose, and not such as dishonesty alone can be interested in causing to be received.
Before an assembly of the Roman people, it was required of Scipio that he should render his accounts. His answer was---``Romans, on such a day I gained a victory: let us ascend to the Capitol and return thanks to the Gods.'' His quietus was granted immediately; and since that day, besides allowing that Scipio was a great warrior, all the historians have been assured of the correctness of his accounts. As to me, had I lived at that time, most probably I should have gone up with the rest to the Capitol, but I should always have retained a little curiosity with respect to the accounts.RR Book 1 Chapter 8