53 Va. L. Rev. 772 (1967)
Thank You Note to Professor Gregory, A

handle is hein.journals/valr53 and id is 774 raw text is: A THANK YOU NOTE TO PROFESSOR GREGORY
Edward A. Mearns, Jr.*
E VERY student comes to law school with an image of what law is
and what law study is all about. That image can be quite fuzzy
and may correspond not at all to the real legal world. On entering law
school, my own picture of the law was that its central concern was
with torts. At the time, I did not know what a tort was, but the con-
crete picture I had formed in my mind was of auto accidents, physical
injuries, libel and slander, suits for damages and the struggle of clever
lawyers arguing before tough judges and juries. This is in fact the
stuff of which torts is made. Unlike most other .beginning students,
nothing that happened my first year in law school changed my image
of law. It takes a great teacher to make you feel his subject is the most
important in the curriculum. My torts teacher, Professor Charles Greg-
ory, did that. Torts, for me, was law school.
Down the alphabet, he would come ... Mr. Leisure ... Mr. Lewis
... Mr. Martin .... Although you were better prepared for your day
than you had ever been in college, the pattern was always much the
same; the twinge of fear, then the challenge and exhilaration, and finally,
the frustration of not being quite equal to the case or hypo thrown
at you. Each day in class we wrestled-each day was good. Every day
we faced the facts of legal life. And every day we laughed a little
while we learned. As the term went by, we were treated to case analy-
sis, the rules of the cases, the principles drawn from the rules, the poli-
cies behind the principles, and the value picture behind this system of
rules, principles and policies. We were presented the philosophy of
torts-fault, compensation, risk distribution-as well as its philoso-
phers. It did not stop there, for then we were shown tort law as a
process, with its burdens of proof, and its division of labor among
judges, juries, legislators and trial lawyers. Exam time came, and though
we had not seemed pressed, we had covered a good deal of ground
without sacrifice of depth or detail. Moreover, a great many of us
wanted to go on learning more about torts. This is the mark of the
great teacher; that he implants in his students the desire to learn more
about the material he teaches.
*Associate Dean, University of Virginia School of Law. B.S., 1951, Yale University;
LL.B., 1958, University of Virginia.
[ 772 l

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