This paper examines the reciprocal interplay between Peter Fitzpatrick's life and work, between significant people, events, ideas and values, and the ways in which he made and re-made himself. It illuminates Peter's struggle, especially from the 1990s onwards, to place ethics centre stage in both life and law. Drawing on archival and secondary research, including interviews with Peter's family, former colleagues and students, this contribution to legal life writing adds to what we already knew about Peter and his scholarship. It assesses and clarifies his key ideas and their intersection with his ethics and lived experiences. It is hoped that the paper will encourage those who are less familiar with Peter's work, or who find his writing daunting, to tackle it anew and appreciate its significance.