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mind was perhaps more capacious than powerful, more clear than profound; too quick and susceptible to admit of a sufficient tenacity of grasp. Hence he was greatest in dealing with facts, and in his exposition of those branches of law which spring most immediately from, and are most closely based upon, human life and conduct; and his influence upon law has probably been felt -more in the impulse and direction he gavo to it than in bis direct contributions to its formal contents. The scope and activity of his intelligence, and the variety of his pursuits may, to some degree, hare impaired the fullness and accuracy of bis acquaintance with its subordinate rules; bat, on the other hand, he had a firm grasp of its great leading principles; he never fell into the snare of subtlety; he never treated law as though it were designed to be an impediment to human action, and a sort of surprise upon mankind; he never willingly permitted substantial justice to be defeated by form aud technicality. There is more goes to the making of a great judge than mere intellectual qualifications; an honest love of j ustice, a true regard to tlie public welfare; a generous disdain of falsehood, tricks, and knavery ; an honour above suspicion; a manly courage and independence; a resolute attachment to freedom—these are the things that give confidence to the public in the administration of justice, and cherish and maintain the spirit of honour in the profession; and these are qualities that have long been associated with the name of Chief Justice Cockbum.
We may b; permitted to regret that the failings incident to such a temperament and genius as his, to the long possession of a great and dignified office, and to advancing age, did not suffer him to unite his name with the promotion of a reform the principles of which he had long advocated. But this is not the time to dwell upon a failure in a great and brilliant career. It is a more congenial task to record the high merits we have briefly and imperfectly sketched, and the long services he rendered country; and to recall to memory the dignity with which he ever sustained his great office; the courtesy, not less sincere than graceful, which he extended to all who came before him; the refined intelligence whioh illuminated his sensitive and expressive features, and the clear melodious voice which could be roused to tones of indignation, but which never lent itself to the mean amusement of sarcasm, and never knew the language of rudeness. To those who heard and 'saw aud knew these things it may well seem that one of its brightest stars has fallen from the judicial firmament; nor cau it be wondered at if they feel the loss with the poignancy of a personal bereavement.
Thx letter addressed by Lord Selborne to the late Lord Chief Justice (which, since it has esoaped from its intended privacy, we may be excused for referring -to) marks a new step in the course of judicial reform; and we may with reasonable probability expect that the change proposed, and for the development of which the vacancy caused by the death of the Chief Justice affords eo remarkably favourable an opportunity, will be sanctioned and approved by the council of judgeB which is shortly to meet. Ever since the Judicature Act of 1873 the prospect of a further consolidation of the courts has no doubt been always present to the minds of those who have thought at all upon the subject; and the death of the late Chief Baron furnished an opportunity for its partial realization which we could hardly think would be neglected. The recent event, in other respects so much to be regretted, expands that opportunity into aa imperative demand for action; and it is a matter to be rejoiced at that the occasion has fallen into the hands of the most sincere and the most successful of law reformers, and that he is supported by men of too much public spirit to embarrass him by pressing their own -claims to preferment.
We may then, perhaps, assume that the second, third, and fourth of the present Divisions of the High Court of Justice will shortly cease to have a separate existence, or rather that the two last will merge in the first; and though a certain feeling of regret may arise at what seems the disappearance of such ancient and historical institutions, the regret will hardly go beyond a sigh when it is remembered that the institution had in effect some time since expired, aud that all that was left to part with was the name. Under such circumstances we may be content to see history returning on its steps, and re-constituting under more favourable conditions an Aula Regis, destined some day, perhaps, to occupy a still wider sphere of action.
But it is not only the nominal and idle distribution of the judicial staff of which the public is weary; it is weary of Divisional Courts, which have lost all the old splendour and prestige of the courts in banc, and exist only to harass the suitor and to perplex the transaction of business. The bench of three judges, strengthened on important occasions to four, which formed the old tribunal, has long since ceased to exist in theory, and only lingers in a curtailed form here aud there in practice. The Divisional Court now consists of two judges, and no mortal man would say, if privately asked, that he would for any of the matters ordinarily transacted before them, prefer two judges to one; unless indeed his hopes in some pending case rested on the probability of creating a division of opinion. To put the matter from another point of view; the j udges of the Chancery Division sit alone; will any one venture to assert that he would be more content, say, with the combined judgment of Vice-Chancellor Slalins and Vioe-Chanoellor Bacon than with the single decision of either of them f If, then, in kindred matters no one desires to establish a double-seated tribunal in Lincoln'sinn, what folly is it to suppose that such a tribunal must be retained at Westminster; or is the element of place really so important that we need to have this disparity in the administration of justice exhibited to our eyes in the Royal Courts of Justice before we can make up our minds to put an end to the distinction?
If this matter were brought to the test of detail, it would be found, we venture to affirm, that there is no business now taken by the Divisional Courts that could not, with propriety, be relegated either to single judges or to the Court of Appeal. If by such a redistribution of work it became necessary to strengthen the Court of Appeal, it would bo far better, and in the main far cheaper, to the community to do so than to continue a system by which the judges are inconvenienced and no one is pleased. It is a point which higher powers will deoide, but we would venture the suggestion that if the proposal which Lord Selborne now makes be adopted, its execution should be delayed until some further re-arrangement of the business can be made, which will remove some of the scars and blots which the Judicature Act partly allowed to remain in the judicial system, and partly, by its imperfect amendment, introduced; and which the rules since made have, in several instances, inflamed aud aggravated. We cannot, on the present opportunity, hope to see all done that needs to be done. But surely so much may be done as to make it easy, nt some future time, and with the help of further experience, to complete that system of which the Judicature Acts traced the first rude and imperfect outlines.
In the case of Lysaght v. Magrath, on the 18th inst, says an Irish legal journal, Chatterton, V.C., remarked thut ne was of opinion that counsel were not sufficiently paid. It was very easy to raise a cry against counsel for not remaining in court till the end of any partionltr case in wliich they might happen to be retained; but the fact was that, having regard to the amount of remuneration they received, it would be unreasonable to expect them to do so. If counsel were properly paid they might afford to do that, but so lontj as they were paid as they were at present they could not be. expected to do it.
THE JUDICIAL STATISTICS.
These returns continue to show a decrease in the total number of the criminal classes at large, but in the number of known thieves and depredators there is an increase equal to four per cent, as compared with the numbers Bhown on the last return. There is a decrease in the number of indictable offences reported by the police, but in the number of persons for trial at assizes and sessions there is a trifling increase. In 1879 there were 34 convictions for murder as against only 20 in the previous year.
The numbers of the police and constabulary force in England and Wales show an increase of 374 over those of last year. In 1879 the total number of the police force was 31,047, consisting of 4 commissioners and assistant commissioners, 4 district and inspecting superintendents in the metropolis, 56 chief constables of counties, 163 head constables of boroughs, 521 superintendents, 1,299 inspectors, 2,983 Serjeants, 25,129 constables, 386 additional constables, and 502 detective officers.
The total number gives one for every 731 of the population according to the census of 1871, or one for every 812 of the population estimated for the middle of the year. Ten years ago the proportion was one police officer for 844 of the estimated population. During these ten years there has been an addition of 5,150 to the numbers of the police.
The costs of the police and constabulary in 1879 was £3,058,671 as against £2,980,592 in the previous year. The amount was expended as follows:—£2,361,987 in salaries and pay; £71,363 in allowances and contingent expenses; £177,353 in clothing and accoutrements; £113,257 in superannuations and gratuities; £49,466 in horses, harness, and forage; £243,804 in buildings, station-house charges, printing, and stationery and £41,441 in other miscellaneous charges. The proportion of this expense which was borne by the Government was £1,209,734, and the balance, amounting to £1,848,937, was provided by those who retained the "special services" of the police, and from local sources.
In addition to the superannuation allowances before mentioned, the following amounts were paid out of the superannuation funds of the different forces—viz., boroughs, £39,741; counties, £53,156; metropolitan police, £36,763; and city of London, £9,211; making a total of £138,871. Thus the whole superannuation allowances of the police for 1879 amounted to £252,128, being £16,061 more than in 1878. It should be added that the superannuation funds are formed from deductions from pay, stoppages, and fines.
Each man cost on an average £93 10s. 4d., being £1 6s. lid. more than the average of last year. Ten years ago the average was £81 14s. lOd.
The Criminal Classes. The returns as to the number of depredators, offenders, and suspected persons at large do not include those who have been living honestly for one year at least subsequently to their discharge after conviction. During the year these classes, including known thieves and depredators, receivers of stolen goods and suspected persons, numbered 41,048, of whom 5,579 were under the age of sixteen years. In the previous year the number was 40,626, of whom 5,683 were under that age. Ten years ago the total number was 54,249. The decrease in these classes in the metropolitan police district alone amounts to 5'1 per cent, on the number of the previous year. The total number of the criminal classes including those at large was 73,817, consisting of 17,553 in local prisons, 10,378 in convict prisons and 4,838 in reformatories; the total is an increase of 325 over the number for 1878. It should be observed that ten years ago the total number of the criminal classes was 13,210 more than it is at present.
The number of indictable offences committed fn 1879 was 52,447, being 1,618 less than in 1878. In respect of these offences 23,658 persons were apprehended;, which is a decrease of 404 from the previous year. The apprehensions in 1879 are iu the proportion of 45*1 per cent, to the number of crimes committed as against 44"5 per cent, in 1878 and 50'06 per cent ten years ago.
The persons apprehended, when brought before themagistrates, were disposed of as follows:
Discharged for want of evidence . . 5,293
It appears from this that the number of persons apprehended being 45'1 per cent, of the number of crimes committed, and that out of the number apprehended 28-9 per cent, being discharged by the magistrates,, no punishment whatever is awarded in respect of more than half the crimes committed, and that only about 65* per cent, of those persons apprehended (being in the proportion of 32'3 per cent, of the number of offences) are committed or bailed for trial.
The principal offences enumerated as having been committed in 1879 are 148 murders, 60 attempts at murder, 754 cases of shooting at, wounding, stabbing, &c, 234 cases of manslaughter, 112 of concealment of birth, 2,930 of burglary, 2,367 of housebreaking, and' 36,562 larcenies. There were 159 murders in 1878, and! 254 cases of manslaughter, showing iu both instances a decrease in 1879, and in all crimes accompanied by violence there is an appreciable decrease from the number of the previous year.
Under the head of summary proceedings before magistrates, it appears that 641,038 persons were proceeded; against, and that 506,281 were convicted, the remaining 134,757 being discharged. The total number convicted shows a decrease of 31,951; but in the previous year there was an increase of 18,393. Ten years ago the total number of persons proceeded against vas 517,875, and the convictions 372,707.
Among the penalties inflicted in respect of these 506,281 summary convictions we find that 103,890 persons were imprisoned for periods varying from 14 days and under to 6 months and upwards, or were sent to reformatories or industrial schools; 341,946 were fined; 1,317 were whipped; 16,781 were ordered to find sureties or to enter into recognizances; 3,232 were delivered up to the army or navy; and 39,115 had other punishments awarded them. The numbers committed to prison and to reformatory and industrial schools are in the proportion of 20°5 per cent, to the total number convicted in 1879, as against 19*8 per cent, in 1878.
The total number of persons apprehended for indie-, table offences, and of those summarily proceeded against was 664,696, and of this number we find that 18,336 were known thieves; 42,628 were suspicious characters? 301,780 were of previous good character, and the character of 215,964 was unknown.
In the year 1879, the number of appeals to quarter sessions was 152 as against 154 in 1878. In 87 of these cases the conviction was affirmed, and in the remainder quashed. There was, therefore, one appeal for every 5,237 cases, and one reversal of judgment for every 12,571 convictions.
Coroners' returns show the number of inquests held during the year to have been 27,056, being 572 less than in the previous year. Verdicts of murder were returned in 153 cases, and of manslaughter in 149; the cases of suicide were 1,941, and there were 10,787 verdicts of accidental death. The return of the ages of the persons on whom inquests were held shows that out of the total of 27,056 death?, 8,522 were children of the age of seven Tears and under, of whom 3,723 were females, and that 4,749 were above the age of 60 years. Of the children 7 years old and under, 15°0 per cent, are said to have been illegitimate.
The expense of holding inquests amounted to £36,333 la. Td., being an average of £3 3s. 9d. for each inquest -, in 1878 the total was £89,290 15s. 9d., and the average £3 4s. 7d. Ten years ago the average cost of each inquest was £3 2s. 9d., and since that time the lowest average has been £2 18s. lid. in 1875, and the highest £3 5s. 3d. in 1877.
EXECUTORS AND ADMINISTRATORS. A Omcfendicm Op The Law Relatino To Executors And ADmxistratobs, With An Appendix Of Statutes Annotated By Means Of References To The Text. By W. Gregory Walker, Barrister-at- La w. Stevens & Haynes.
In this admirably printed volume, Mr. Walker has attempted to condense a very -wide subject into a comparatively small compass. His general scheme of arrangement is good. Dealing first with the creation of the office of executor, he next considers who are capable smd incapable of being executors or administrators; renunciation by executors; devolution of the office of executor, and grants of probate. He then passes to letters of administration, which occupy many chapters. Subsequently he treats of the powers,duties, and liabilities of executors and administrators; their accounts and indemnity, and the close of the office of executor or administrator; and the concluding chapter deals with the executor de son tort.
The extent of the subject is sufficiently indicated by this bare outline of the leading divisions adopted, and it is not at all surprising that in compressing it into a large type volume of only 272 pages (excluding appendix and index) the author should have been compelled to deal rather cursorily with many branches of the subject, not merely of historical or antiquarian interest, but of great practical utility. As fair warning is given, both by the title of the book and in the preface, of the intention of the author to treat his subject compendiously, no reasonable exception can be taken to brevity, provided the reader is furnished with all the points of importance connected with the subject. It is sometimes possible to state, in a few words, the result of much consideration and extensive knowledge. Mr. Walker's brevity is, too often, not of this type. For instance, the important i^bject of charging executors with interest on balances unnecessarily retained uninvested, is disposed of in a page and a half. We defy anyone, however accurate and extensive may be his acquaintance with the cases, to condense within this compass the rules which have been laid down on this difficult and obscure question so is to f umish an outline of any practical]value. We regret to say that the outline given in this book is neither complete nor accurate. As regards completeness, it is only necessary to say that all the information vouchsafed as to the question of when compound interest will fce charged is contained in about two lines on p. 220. As regards accuracy, we may refer to these two lines as an illustration. They state that "compound interest will only be given against an accounting party ■»hen he has employed money in business." Surely the author cannot be unaware of the cases in which it has been held that compound interest will be charged against > trustee or executor who, notwithstanding an express direction in the will to accumulate the income, keeps trust funds in hand without endeavouring to invest "iem—cases which were recognized by Lord Selborne in Pjse v. Foster (23 W. R. 355, L. R. 7 H. L., at p. 346).
Mr. Walker has no doubt followed the head-note to the singular report of Burdick v. Qarrick which appeared in the Law Reports (L. R. 5 Ch. 233), in which it is said (exactly in Mr. Walker's words) that "compound interest will only be given against an accounting party when he has employed the money iu business." But Mr. Walker ought to know, what the rest of the legal world by this time pretty well knows, that the head-notes in the Law Reports are sometimes very curious productions, apparently written under some special inspiration unconnected with the judgment in the case reported.
On another point Mr. Walker has allowed himself to be be misled by this head-note to Burdick v. Qarrick. He says, referring to that case, "In a recent case, where there was no proof that a person in a fiduciary position had made any interest or profit on money in his hands, he was charged with interest at five per cent., the court presuming the rate of interest made to be the ordinary rate of interest—namely (as it was said), five per cent." The words in italics are taken verbatim from the reporter's head-note; but if Mr. Walker had looked at p. 237 of the report, he would have found it stated in argument, and not denied, that the money had been employed by the fiduciaries in their business, and had been mixed up with partnership funds; and he would have seen that Lord Hatherley, in his observations as to the court presuming the rate of interest made upon the money to be the ordinary rate—viz., five per cent.— must have been referring to interest upon trust moneys employed in trade. If Mr. Walker had also referred to the report of the case in the Weekly Reporter (vol. 18, 288), he would have found the key both to this question of the employment of trust funds in trade and to Lord Justice Giffard's perplexing observations as reported in the Law Reports. What the Lord Justice really said was that "if an executor has made use of the money in trade, he must be presumed to have made five per cent."
This reproduction of head-notes, without regard to the question of whether they accurately represent the doctrine laid down in the case, is, by no means, confined to the instances we have cited. On the next page (p. 230) we are told that "the court will not charge au executor who has been guilty of delay in accounting with interest on arrears of income unpaid by him." This is exactly what the reporter says in his head-note to Blogg v. Johnson (L. R. 2 Ch. 225). But what did Lord Chelmsford say in that case? Why, that it is "immaterial how the sum [which has been retained by the executor uninvested] has arisen, whether from a legacy, or a distributive share, or a residue, or the arrears of income. In the latter case the claim for interest is not made on account of the arrears, but for the improper keeping buck of a, sum of money, from whatever source derived, which the executor or the trustee ought to have paid over."
These are instances of too hasty consideration of case?, and they might be greatly multiplied. But there are worse faults in the book. On p. 233 Mr. Walker says that " an executor in India is entitled here, out of deference to the practice of the Indian courts, to a commission of five per cent, on all assets of a testator collected by him there." It would appear that Mr. Walker is not aware of the alteration effected in the Indian law by Act 2 of 1874, under which Administrators-General of Bengal, Madras, and Bombay are appointed, and which provides (by section 56) that no other person than the Administrator-General shall receive or retain any commission or agency charges for anything done as executor or administrator under any probate or letters of administion granted by the High Courts or district courts. It cannot be doubted that, as the practice of the Court of Chancery in allowing a commission of five per cent, to an executor in India was expressly based on the abolished practice of the Indian courts, the commission will no longer be allowed by the Chancery Division. Attention was drawn to the matter in an article in this journal two years ago, and the Administrator-General of Bengal did us the honour to enclose our article to the Secretary of the Government of India, with a letter requesting that the advice of the law •officers should be obtained as to the illegality of the practice of executors and administrators in India receiving any commission on the assets collected by them. The opinion of the Advocate-General was obtained, and entirely accorded with our view; and in compliance with his recommendation, a copy of the correspondence was sent to the Secretary of State for India, with a request that he would bring the matter to the notice of the Chancery Division of the High Court in any case which might arise as to the allowance of commission to private persons administering estates in India.
We might add other instances of inaccuracies which we have observed in Mr. Walker's book, but the task is not an agreeable one. We cannot commend the work as very reliable, but it may be useful as giving references to a large number of recent cases, and as a manual in which to note up fresh cases.
EXTRADITION PROCEDURE. Procedure D'extradition Et Resume Des Traites Actuellement En Vlouer, Concltjs Par Le Gouvern
MENT DE SA MAJESTE Britanniqce PAR LA FRANCE ET LA
Beloiqcb Avec Les Autres Puissances. Par C. E. Howard Vincent. Hachette & Cie.
The origin of this manual is given in the preface, which, like the rest of the book, is in French. It appears that the Home Secretary recently asked the Director of Criminal Investigations to prepare for the police authorities in the United Kingdom a circular explaining the procedure in case of a demand for extradition made to them by, or made by them from, a foreign Government. In consequence of representations which have been made of the value to foreign nations of a translation of this circular, the Home Secretary has authorized its publication in French. The first part of the book contains an extremely concise and clear account of the procedure to obtain extradition of a fugitive in the United Kingdom, with forms of orders. We have rarely met with a better set of practical instructions. Take, for instance, the statement of the three questions which arise with reference to the crime in respect of which extradition is demanded. Is the crime alleged of a political nature? Is it, according to English legislation, one for which extradition can be demanded? And would the evidence of guilt furnished in support of the demand for extradition justify the sending of the accused before a jury, if the crime alleged had been committed in England? Each of these questions is carefully discussed, and upon the last Mr. Vincent says:—
"Pour cette question il est & remarquer que le systeme anglais diflere completement de celui qui est adopte en France et en Belgique. Dans ces deux pays, l'examen effectue, soit par l'administration, soit par le pouvoir judiciare, porte seulement sur le point de savoir si le prevenu est reguiierement poursuivi dans le pays requerant; la question de culpabilite est laissee en dehors de la cause, et 1 'accuse n'a point & se defendre d'avoir commis l'infraction qui lui est imputee. Dans la Grande-Bretagne, au contraire, l'examen porte sur le fond meme du proces criminel. Le tribunal appi ecie les preuves de culpabilite fourniea a l'appui de la demande. II exerce un jurisdiction semblable it celle qui est attribute, en France, h la Chambre des mises en accusation de la Cour d'appel; comme elle, il examine s'il existe contre le prevenu des preuves ou des indices d'un crime prevu par la loi, et si ces preuves et ces indices sont ossez graves pour que la mise en accusation soit prononcee. Mais, a l'inverse de la chambre franchise des mises en accusation, le tribunal anglais juge en audience publique, et apres avoir entendu le prevenu et les temoins cites par le defense et par 1'accusation."
Similar particulars are given, with equal clearness, as to the mode to be adopted in France, Belgium, and Holland; and subsequently some interesting details are added as to the process adopted to discover the whereabouts of a fugitive criminal from a foreign country who is supposed to be within the jurisdiction of the metropolitan police. The Director, we are told, transmits warning by telegraph to all the divisions of police; this is accomplished in a quarter of an hour. There is in operation a system of sending wood engravings of the portrait of the criminal to all the police stations in the United Kingdom; and the Director says that this plan has been found to be quite as effective as photography, more rapid, and less costly. The specimens of wood-cut portraits given in the book are certainly very characteristic. As the Director remarks, when 40,000 police agents are furnished with the criminal's portrait, it becomes almost impossible for him to escape from j ustice. In the appendix to the work all the extradition treaties are given in full.
NURSERY RHYMES FOR LEGAL BABES. Leading Cases Made East: A Selection Of Leading Cases nr The Common Law, With Notes. By W. Shirley Shirley, Barrister-at-Law. Stevens & Sons.
Mr. Shirley seeks to arrest the attention of law students by tickling their fancy. By way of rendering the study of the law " less dry and repulsive," he makes his statement of cases facetious and familiar. Fot instance, he gives Burkmire v. Darnell as follows :—
"Lightfinger wanted somebody to lend him a horse; but who would lend Lightfinger a horse? He was so suspioious a character that everybody he applied to remarked " Walker," which he thought not a particularly appropriate reply to one who aspired to be a rider. At last be got the weak side of one Darnell, who had no horses himself, bat knew some persons who had. To one of these persons, named Burkmire, Darnell went, and with many expressions of confidence undertook to be responsible for Lightfinger's bringing s ifely back any horse that Burkmire might intrust with him. On the faith of this undertaking—a verbal one, of coarse—Barkmire let Lightfinger have one of the best horses in his stable, and that gentleman rode away, and as there were neither railways, nor telegraphs, nor police in 1700, neither he nor the horse were ever heard of again. This being the state of the game, Burkmire played the only card that was left him: he sued the surety. This card, however, did not prove the trump he anticipated. He found to his cost that he ought to have taken Darnell's promise in writing. The Statute of Frauds says that 'a promise to answer for the debt, defanlt, or miscarriage of another person ' mast be in writing, and it was precisely that promise which Darnell had made by word of mouth. So he went away a sadder and a wiser man."
We suppose there must be law students who find it easier to remember cases done up in the style of Joe Miller than cases as stated in Smith's Leading Cases; ii so, Mr. Shirley will earn the position of a benefactor to the race. We confess, however, that we prefer his notes, which are often sensible and shrewd.
A Diqe8t Op The Law Op Partnership. By Frederick Pollock, Barrister-at-Law. Second Edition. Stevens & Sons.
We are glad to see a new edition of this carefully and skilfully constructed Digest. Mr. Pollock has added, in an appendix, the Partnership Bill of last session as amended in Committee, which he says obtained the general, though unofficial, approval of the Board of Trade. The recent decisions have been added to the Digest, among them being, of course, the decisions on Bovill's Act. We are a little surprised that Mr. Pollock should have contented himself with a simple statement of the facts in Poohy v. Driver and Ex parte Delhasse. by way of " illustrations " to section 1 of the Act, without pointing out (except as to the necessity for signature ol the "contract in writing") the effect of those decisions npon the construction of the Act. For instance, it would be desirable for the reader to know that the money must not be advanced for,the purposes of the business, but as a personal loan to the trader. And we think that an outline of the provisions which may be safely stipulated for by the lender under the*Act would have been more an the mere statement of the facts of the As regards other parts of the book, we have no . to qualify the praise we bestowed on the first
BANKRUPTCY. Thi Prtsciplbs or Bankruptcy, With Ax Appendix
CjiTAIMNG THE GENERAL BuLES, 1870, 1871, 1873,
Ixd 1878; A Scale Of Costs, And The Bills Of Sale Act, 1878. By Bichard Bimqwood, Barrister-at-Law. Stevens & Haynes.
We have delayed too long our notice of this useful little book. In about a hundred pages Mr. Bingwood gives a well-arranged summary of bankruptcy law, referring to the leading cases. The work may, with advantage, be placed in the hands of students before they undertake their Bobson. The index appears to need some amendment; we fail, for instance, to find any head Bent." The Bills of Sale Act, 1878, is I in the text, and given in full in an appendix.
EMPLOYERS' LIABILITY ACT, 1880. The Employees' Liability Act, 1880. By Horace , Esq., Barrister-at-Law. Stevens & Sons.
1 little pamphlet is published by way of supplement to Mr. Horace Smith's treatise on the Law of Negligence, 1 we noticed a short time ago. The introduction 1 soma useful hints to anyone entering upon the of the text of the statute. Mr. Smith calls attention to the very curious phraseology employed in various parts of the Act, but he very wisely refrains from expressing a decided opinion as to the solution which may be hereafter given by the courts to the verbal enigmas propounded by the Legislature in some of the
THE SHORT-COMINGS OF COLLECTIONS OF CONVEYANCING PRECEDENTS. [2*o the Editor of the Solicitors' Journal.] Sir,—Perhaps you will permit me to make some retnaxks on the above subject generally. The observations of yourself, at p. 41, and your correspondent, at p. 46, related tc leases only, and observations cn the same subject were made by correspondents in one or more numbers of the last volume. The reason why so few forms of leases have hitherto been given is stated, I think in Martin's Conveyancing, to be that drafts of this class do not generally find their way into a conveyancer's chambers. Few forms were given in that collection, and in the 2nd edition of vol. 5, part 1, of Davidson's Conveyancing founded thereon, but in the 3rd edition of Davidson the number is increased; and there is a fair number given in Key and Elphinstone's Conveyaucing; hot in no work with which I am acquainted is there a good form of house lease, fair as between both landlord and tenant. The forms in Davidson are, I think, all landlord's leases, and I venture to think no solicitor, acting for a lessee, would approve such forms; they require modifying as to repairs, damage by fire and accidents and suspension of rent. In these respects, one form in Prideaux's Conveyancing is more favourable the lessee, and in Key and Elphinstone there are 1 variations, except in the matter of the suspen
sion of rent, and the clause on this subject is one I have certainly never seen used. That the books are no guides to solicitors in settling a draft lease 011 behalf of an intending tenant is shown by the great difference there is in the clauses they use for this purpose, each solicitor apparently having a clause of his own framing. The forms of house leases want revising, and the editors of the various collections should, in revising them, bear in mind that the tenant almost always objects (1) to repair the main timbers, walls, roof, and outside parts; (2) to make good damage caused by fire, tempest, or accident; (3) to insure; and (4) to pay rent during the time occupied in repairing. That all these matters are thrown on the tenant in the stock forms Ib a cause of considerable annoyance and trouble to solicitors acting for lessees.
I have often thought how much better the wants of solicitors were supplied years ago by Bythewood's Conveyancing—a perfect mine, whether as regards forms, or the law bearing thereon. In these days we have nothing at all approaching it for general usefulness. Extensive as the work was, Sweet's Index afforded a ready means of finding anything the book contained. The work was, I suspect, killed by Davidson's Conveyancing—which, however, does not cover nearly the same ground—and it is probably too late to hope that any new edition will be published. In the absence of such an edition the new work, "Key and Elphinstone's Conveyancing," may readily be made of considerable value to the profession. It contains a very large collection of forms, but many additions will be required before it can take the place of the collections at present in use; some additional forms being required under such headings as Agreements, Conveyances, Leases, Mortgages, and Settlements. It would add very considerably to the value of the work for practical purposes if more notes could be given. A reference under each form to similar forms to be found in other collections, and to the law bearing on the forms, would be a most useful addition. The space thus occupied would be very little, and the saving of time very great. Personally, I am accustomed to consult several forms, if they can be found, before settling a draft, and the time occupied in searching could generally be better employed. As regards the notes on the law, I suppose most men turn to the form book to ascertain whether it gives a note of cases bearing cn the form. I do, and should think my book much more valuable if, for instance, under the covenant in a lease not to " do any act which may be a nuisance, annoyance, Sec." a note was given from which I could gather what meaning had, by decision, been given to these words—and so under other forms. These additions would not be difficult to make, and there could be no doubt as to their value.
Of one class of forms the books seem to have taken little notice—I refer to those relating to perpetual rentcharges reserved on conveyances of building land, common in several counties. Following the custom in other counties of creating ground-rents and improved rents, the first owner sells the land in consideration of a rent-charge, and the purchaser re-sells in consideration of second or improved rent-charges, payable to himself. The land and the rent-charges become the subject of conveyance, mortgage, settlement, &o., and of course require suitable conveyancing forms. Having regard to the large extent of land subject to these rent-charges, and to the increasing number of the districts in which this mode of dealing with land is becoming common, it might reasonably have been expected that the standard books of forms would have supplied the wants of solicitors in these districts, but the fact is otherwise, and "office forms" have to be used, with their attendant disadvantages. It is true that Prideaux's Conveyancing contains some forms of the class referred to—more, in fact, than any other work—but the collection is not complete. If Messrs. Key and Elphinstone would supply this want, they would add still further to the utility of their work. Country Solicitor.