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“Destructive to Judicial Dignity”: The Poetry of Melville Weston Fuller
Journal of Supreme Court History
  • Todd C. Peppers, Washington and Lee University School of Law
  • Mary Crockett Hill, Roanoke College
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Although there have been many debates over the relevant qualifications for a Supreme Court nominee, Fuller’s nomination was the first—and last—time in history where the quality of a nominee’s verse was debated in national and regional newspapers. In this essay, we weigh the merits of two claims leveled against Fuller: (1) he was a mediocre poet, and (2) his penchant for verse colored and polluted his judicial opinions. As judge and jury, we conclude that neither charge is supported by a preponderance of the evidence.

Citation Information
Todd C. Peppers & Mary Crockett Hill, “Destructive to Judicial Dignity”: The Poetry of Melville Weston Fuller, 46 J. Sup. Ct. Hist. 148 (2021).