The next year, 1780, the great British Jurist Sir William Blackstone died. This was just three years after Captain Cook had visited Tasmania — and only eight years before the establishment of the first permanent British Common Law Colony in Australia.
Well does University of Queensland Law Professor R.D. Lumb declare in his valuable book Australian Constitutionalism9 that it was left to Solicitor-General Sir William Blackstone — a Judge, Scholar and Parliamentarian — to portray the operation of the rights of Magna Carta. Indeed, it is beyond doubt that they were certainly the rights of eighteenth-century Englishmen — including those who from then on would settle in Australia.