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The Art of Cross-Examination [Mass Market Paperback]

Francis L. Wellman
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

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Book Description

November 1, 1997 0684843048 978-0684843049
The Making of the Modern Law: Legal Treatises, 1800-1926 includes over 20,000 analytical, theoretical and practical works on American and British Law. It includes the writings of major legal theorists, including Sir Edward Coke, Sir William Blackstone, James Fitzjames Stephen, Frederic William Maitland, John Marshall, Joseph Story, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. and Roscoe Pound, among others. Legal Treatises includes casebooks, local practice manuals, form books, works for lay readers, pamphlets, letters, speeches and other works of the most influential writers of their time. It is of great value to researchers of domestic and international law, government and politics, legal history, business and economics, criminology and much more.
The below data was compiled from various identification fields in the bibliographic record of this title. This data is provided as an additional tool in helping to insure edition identification:
<sourceLibrary>Harvard Law School Library

<collection ID>CTRG96-B2043

<Notes>Title page printed in red and black.

<imprintFull>New York ; London : Macmillan, 1905. <collation>404 p. ; 23 cm
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Frequently Bought Together

The Art of Cross-Examination + Win Your Case: How to Present, Persuade, and Prevail--Every Place, Every Time + How to Argue & Win Every Time: At Home, At Work, In Court, Everywhere, Everyday
Price for all three: $31.60

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (November 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684843048
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684843049
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 4.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,991 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
78 of 78 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Highly Accessible Masterpiece July 2, 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Every once in a while a book is published that has a wide appeal to the general public even though it is written for a specific, professional audience. _The Art of Cross-Examination_ by Francis Wellman is just such a book.
But, this book is not new and today it does not have a very wide readership outside the field of law. Perhaps this is because of a marketing failure on behalf of its publishers or perhaps it is due to a lack of reviewers pointing out the value it offers to a general audience. Whatever the case may be the fact remains that this book _is_ worth reading--by the professional attorney _and_ the average man or woman on the street. The purpose of my review here is to show, in essence, why.
_The Art of Cross-Examination_ teaches its readers how--meaning: by what methods--the truth can best be reached given conflicting stories or observations (whether they result from dishonesty, or from a failure to properly identify the truth).
One of the things readers will learn from this book is how to--and when or when not to--ask the questions that will lead one to the truth, whatever that turns out to be in each case. You will learn the methods and the proper manner of cross-examination and then you'll learn how both of these apply in differing contexts (such as when cross-examining an expert or a perjured witness).
As in all great non-fiction books Wellman presents what is being taught clearly, building in each chapter on what was learned in the previous one. More importantly, the author presents his case for how a proper cross-examination should be conducted by reference to numerous, often-humorous, and always-dramatic instances of successful cross-examinations.
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Classic Commentary on Cross Examination July 7, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Back in 1973, when I rose to my hind legs to cross examine my first adverse witness in my first jury trial, I had but one thought on my mind: "What do I do now?" The answer came to me from a little paperback book I had picked up on a whim while I was in law school. Remembering a few of the teachings in that book, I struggled through that cross and several more en route to a favorable jury verdict.
The first two years of my law practice, I read "The Art of Cross Examination" once every three months, and I profited from each re-reading. Wellman gives a wealth of basic practical advice, gives it in an engaging fashion, and illustrates it with entertaining stories. When you read it, you may find some gender references which we "enlightened" moderns would describe as "politically incorrect," but try to remember that the book was written a century ago. Despite the fact that it's beginning to show its age a little, this book is THE classic commentary on cross examination. Nowhere else can you find such good instruction at such a low price. END
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece September 17, 1998
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Twenty years ago as a young lawyer I tried a case with one of my firms partners, who was in his eighties. He let me try the case, and we received a rather just decision from the court. I was quite proud of myself, only to learn from my boss that the senior partner felt that my style of cross examination was ineffective at best.
I determined to learn all I could about effective cross examination. The first book I read was also the last- Wellman's The Art of Cross Examination. Although the book was writen around the turn of the century, it contains a treasure trove of illustraions about different kinds of cross examination. How to Cross Examine the Hostile Witness, the Lying Witness , the scientific Witness, the Truthful Witness (the hardest job of all)
The book is a true today as it was 95 years ago.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Museum Piece. Interesting and Useless. October 3, 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
As a trial lawyer and former assistant district attorney, I read this book expecting to learn the nuts and bolts of cross-examination. What a disappointment. The book is obsolete and contains virtually nothing of any use to today's trial lawyer. It's a fun read, and it's interesting to see some of the examinations excerpted, but using this book to learn to cross-examine is probably close to malpractice. There are excellent books and tapes on the topic if you want practical "how to" info. This isn't among them. Still, it's worth reading as a piece of legal history.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must November 26, 2001
By Tal
Format:Mass Market Paperback
to simplify things, It's the Sun Tsu's "Art of war" for a lawyer.
It was written some 100 years ago, but hey: weren't those the days of the great, classic cross-examinations? besides, the chapter about the cross of experts is especially relevant in our days.
the book helped me understand myself, the wittness and the judge during the trial, and complicated as well as simplified things.
The examples really help you through the tactics described.
The best I've read, and the cheapest I've bought.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still Relevant After 100 Years April 1, 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Francis Wellman first published this book in 1903 and despite the passage of over 100 years, the book is nearly as relevant then as it is today.

There is much to value in this work but, perhaps, the most important contribution is Wellman's recognition that there are different types of lawyers who employ different styles of cross-examination. Wellman, therefore, provides the reader with several examples of lawyers employing different styles of cross-examintion.

In terms of learning the craft of cross-examination, the most valuable chapters deal with the examination of experts and in the examination of the "fallacies of testimony" and the "Silent Cross-Examination."

In reading Wellman's work, the reader must be cognizant of the fact that the book was written in 1903 and, as a result, realize that some of the "practical" advice may be outdated. Even so, there still may be value in that advice.

In the end, the same thing was true in 1903 as it is today - the practice of law is really the art of borrowing and Wellman has provided much for the practitioner to borrow.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent book for any lawyer.
This is an excellent book for any lawyer and is entertaining. I have read it three times and learn something each time.
Published 3 months ago by william g. hughes
5.0 out of 5 stars Trial Lawyer's Review
This is the ultimate classic on cross examination technique. It is required reading for every trial lawyer. Don't go to court without it.
Published 7 months ago by Thomas Baker
2.0 out of 5 stars Irrelevant war stories from a bygone legal era
For some reason, this book is considered a classic. In law school, it was assigned reading in our Evidence class, even though it has very little to do with the law of evidence and... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Uberfiend
5.0 out of 5 stars Timeless
A fascinating read although at times a bit dry. Practical and theoretical advise for the advocate of law whether practicing in the US or UK. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Victor Saraiva
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
I purchased this for my fiance, he is in law school. Apparently he refers to it a lot because it so informative.
Published on April 26, 2011 by Jherria
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic
I first read this book in college--before almost all of you were born. I went to law school and I've been practicing law for more years than I like to admit. Read more
Published on September 26, 2010 by OldNewEnglander
5.0 out of 5 stars Great management and sales book found in the legal section
This is actually a great management and sales book written by a lawyer for lawyers. Wellman explains techniques to elicit answers in the most revealing way in a courtroom... Read more
Published on February 23, 2010 by Eric A. Karl
3.0 out of 5 stars Art of Cross-Examination
It is a collection of war stories, most applicable but some less so. Though is is of another age, mainly 19th, early 20th century, it does well illustrate basic principles of the... Read more
Published on March 31, 2009 by D. Frazier
5.0 out of 5 stars Great entertainment
Unlike most reviewers of this book, I am not a lawyer. But I've been reading and rereading Wellman's classic ever since I stumbled across it in my early teens, and it's one of the... Read more
Published on November 28, 2008 by Andy Baird
3.0 out of 5 stars A Book Most Lawyers Have But Have Never Read
Any trial lawyer has heard of this book and many probably have it. That doesn't mean that they have read it. Read more
Published on November 8, 2007 by D. Shane Read
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