The great English architect Christopher Wren is buried in his most famous church, St. Paul's London. The inscription on his memorial stone concludes with the words: Lector, si monumentum requiris, circumspice. Reader, if you seek his monument, look around you.
That instruction serves well those who would appraise and honor Herbert Wechsler's contributions to American criminal law. When he joined the Columbia Law School faculty in 1933, this school did not teach criminal law and much of the profession thought the topic was not worth studying.' What fabulous good fortune it was that Herb thought otherwise. Throughout a long and productive career, in which he accomplished great projects with the highest distinction, he gave the greatest part of his energy and talent to building a better criminal law.
Herbert Wechsler and the Criminal Law: A Brief Tribute,
Colum. L. Rev.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.columbia.edu/faculty_scholarship/39
This article originally appeared in 100 Colum. L. Rev. 1347 (2000). Reprinted by permission.