Illustrated portrait of Edward Coke, circa 1600s. (Photo by Fotosearch/Getty Images).
Found in Selected Writings of Sir Edward Coke, vol. I
By Sir Edward Coke and Walter Lippman
In 1604, the English the English judge and jurist Sir Edward Coke announced in a "ruling known as Semayne's Case that there were strict limits on how Sheriffs may enter a person's house in order to issue writs": "That the house of every one is to him as his Castle and Fortress as well for defence against injury and violence, as for his repose...". If the Sheriffs did not follow the correct procedure in issuing writs, then the home owner had the right "to shut the door of his own house" in their faces.
In 1934, the American political commentator Waler Lippman added: "[T]he Englishman's belief that his house is his castle and that the king cannot enter it, like the American's conviction that he must be able to look any man in the eye and tell him to go to hell, are the very essence of the free man's way of life."
The Method Of Freedom, 1934, pp100-2
Lawrence Kadish serves on the Board of Governors of Gatestone Institute.