William Hawkins (serjeant-at-law)

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William Hawkins (1673–1746) was a barrister and serjeant-at-law, best known for his work on the English criminal law, Treatise of Pleas of the Crown.

He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from St John's College, Cambridge in 1689, and earned a Master of Arts from the same college in 1693.[1] He was admitted a member of the Inner Temple on 10 February 1700 (or possibly 24 November 1701, as two persons of his name appear in the record books). He became a serjeant-at-law on 1 February 1723. Among his clients was Thomas Bambridge, the notoriously cruel warden of Fleet Prison.

In addition to his Treatise of Pleas of the Crown, he also published an abridgment of the first part of Edward Coke's Institutes of the Lawes of England in 1711. This work ran through many editions, and was praised by Blackstone in the Commentaries on the Laws of England.

The poet William Hawkins was his son.[2]


  1. ^ So the DNB, but this is regarded as mistaken by "Hawkins, William (HWKS686W)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 
  2. ^  "Hawkins, William (1722-1801)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 



 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain"Hawkins, William (1673-1746)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.