The Common Law is a book that was written by Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. in 1881, 21 years before Holmes became an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.
The book is about common law in the United States, including torts, property, contracts, and crime. It is written as a series of lectures.
One of the most famous aphorisms to be drawn from this book occurs on the first page: "The life of the law has not been logic: it has been experience." Holmes's pronouncement is a subtle qualification of a dictum by the famous seventeenth-century English jurist Sir Edward Coke: "Reason is the life of the law."
LECTURE I. EARLY FORMS OF LIABILITY.
LECTURE II. THE CRIMINAL LAW.
LECTURE III. TORTS.TRESPASS AND NEGLIGENCE.
LECTURE IV. FRAUD, MALICE, AND INTENT.THE THEORY OF TORTS.
LECTURE V. THE BAILEE AT COMMON LAW.
LECTURE VI. POSSESSION.
LECTURE VII. CONTRACT.I. HISTORY.
LECTURE VIII. CONTRACT. II. ELEMENTS.
LECTURE IX. CONTRACT.III. VOID AND VOIDABLE.
LECTURE X. SUCCESSIONS AFTER DEATH.
LECTURE X. SUCCESSIONS INTER VIVOS
LECTURE XI. SUCCESSIONS.II. INTER VIVOS.
LECTURE I. EARLY FORMS OF LIABILITY.
 The object of this book is to present a general view of the Common Law. To accomplish the task, other tools are needed besides logic. It is something to show that the consistency of a system requires a particular result, but it is not all. The life of the law has not been logic: it has been experience. The felt necessities of the time, the prevalent moral and political theories, intuitions of public policy, avowed or unconscious, even the prejudices which judges share with their fellow-men, have had a good deal more to do than the syllogism in determining the rules by which men should be governed. The law embodies the story of a nation's development through many centuries, and it cannot be dealt with as if it contained only the axioms and corollaries of a book of mathematics. In order to know what it is, we must know what it has been, and what it tends to become. We must alternately consult history and existing theories of legislation. But the most difficult labor will be to understand the combination of the two into new products at every stage. The substance of the law at any given time pretty nearly  corresponds, so far as it goes, with what is then understood to be convenient; but its form and machinery, and the degree to which it is able to work out desired results, depend very much upon its past.
In Massachusetts today, while, on the one hand, there are a great many rules which are quite sufficiently accounted for by their manifest good sense, on the other, there are some which can only be under.
Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. (March 8, 1841 - March 6, 1935) was an American jurist who served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1902 to 1932, and as Acting Chief Justice of the United States in January-February 1930. Noted for his long service, concise and pithy opinions, and deference to the decisions of elected legislatures, he is one of the most widely cited United States Supreme Court justices in history, particularly for his "clear and present danger" opinion for a unanimous Court in the 1919 case of Schenck v. United States, and is one of the most influential American common law judges, honored during his lifetime in Great Britain as well as the United States. Holmes retired from the court at the age of 90, making him the oldest justice in the Supreme Court's history. He also served as an Associate Justice and as Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, and was Weld Professor of Law at his alma mater, Harvard Law School.
Profoundly influenced by his experience fighting in the American Civil War, Holmes helped move