George Wythe

He was the greatest teacher of law in America. The George Wythe School of law in Williamsburg, Virginia, today carries on his legacy. Thomas Jefferson called him “my faithful and beloved mentor in youth and my most affectionate friend through life.” Wythe saw something special in Patrick Henry and recommended him to his colleagues for licensure. He dropped clients who lied to him and refused taking a case when he believed the potential client was indeed guilty. He made bold his belief that the only legal tie to Britain was the King and that the monarch forfeited allegiance through tyranny. No one knew the common law better or the standard texts of English law.