Law’s empire
Chartering English colonies on the American mainland in the seventeenth century
in Law, history, colonialism
Abstract only
Log-in for full text

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

manchesterhive requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals - to see content that you/your institution should have access to, please log in through your library system or with your personal username and password.

If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/extracts and download selected front and end matter. 

Institutions can purchase access to individual titles; please contact for pricing options.


If you have an access token for this content, you can redeem this via the link below:

Redeem token

This chapter addresses mainland settlement from the outside, as first and foremost an expression of, largely English, colonizing impulses. Examination of the charters that authorized English intrusions onto the American mainland both relativizes and reinforces the Jean Comaroffs' critique. As the seventeenth century became the eighteenth, English colonization of the American mainland became more and more completely a self-colonization. It seems clear that law as a discourse of authority-in-general had a crucial role to play in the processes by which English colonizers claimed, planted, manned and kept the American mainland. American historians have tended to write the history of the colonial era largely as an inside narrative of the formation of the settler societies that eventually became building blocks of a new nation. Much of American historiography assumes English legal culture as a foundation, notably as a font of liberties more perfectly realized in a revolutionary America.

Law, history, colonialism

The reach of empire


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 71 26 0
Full Text Views 39 5 1
PDF Downloads 8 2 0