From the History and Analysis of the Common Law of England, (1713, J Nutt) pp. 59–60.
‘Use and Custom, and Judicial Decisions and Resolutions, and Acts of Parliament,… might introduce some New Laws, and alter some Old, which we now take to be the very Common Law itself, tho’ the Times and precise Periods of such Alterations are not explicitely or clearly known:
But tho’ those particular Variations and Accessions have happened in the Laws, yet they being only partial and successive, we may with just Reason say, They are the same English Laws now, that they were 600 Years since in the general.
As the Argonauts Ship was the same when it returned home, as it was when it went out, tho’ in that Long Voyage it had successive Amendments, and scarce came back with any of its former Materials; and as Titius is the same Man he was 40 Years since, tho’ Physicians tell us, That in a Tract of seven Years, the Body has scarce any of the same Material Substance it had before.’
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