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we must conclude our notice of the first volume of a work which forms an important contribution to the literature of public law. It may be doubted, indeed, whether its usefulness has not been sacrificed to the mass of learning, legal as well as classical, which on all sides almost oppresses the reader, a fault--for so it must be regardedfrom which the more modest work of Sir Travers Twiss is free, and which therefore causes the latter book to be the subject of more frequent reference, both by the student and practitioner, than Sir R. Phillimore's more elaborate volumes. Perhaps something too may be put on the score of that absence of imagination which in some writers, Duer for example, and Dana, serves to lighten with choice phrase, or happy illustration, even such a heavy subject as International Law, making less weary the statement of doctrine, or formal citation of case or treaty. From this Sir R. Phillimore's book is absolutely free ; and it is therefore to be consulted mainly
: for the information and learning, varied and exhaustive, which it supplies. In this point of view the book is of great utility, and one which should find a place in the library of every civilian. The Law of Blockade. - By H. B. Deane, B.A., of the Inner Temple.
London : Longmans & Co. 1870. This is a fragmentary contribution to the literature of a large subject. It is an essay which obtained, in 1869, the International Law Prize at Oxford, and, for that reason, was considered by the author and some friends—in whom the critical faculty would not appear to have been present to any distressing extent-to be worth publication. The fate of prize essays has become proverbial, and we cannot say that the present brochure is an exception to the rule which assigns to such compositions a diminished value. It consists, in fact, of little more than the names and titles of the works of some of the best known writers on the law of blockade; and it contains, also, what purports to be an account of the doctrine, as far as it is to be collected, from the leading decisions of Sir W. Scott. Of the decisions of the American Courts, in cases arising out of the recent civil war, and under which the Law of Blockade has undergone such important modifications, the author does not appear to have ever heard. And, although this little book is not uninteresting as the effort of a young student to treat of an important subject, the information it does contain is far too general to allow it to be of much value as a guide to the branch of Maritime Law of which it professes to treat.
A Selection of Leading Cases on the Hindu Law of Inheritance, with
Notes. By the Honourable John Bruce Norton, of Lincoln's Inn, Barrister-at-Law, Advocate-General of Madras, and Member of the Legislative Council. Part I. Madras : C. Bt. Cruiz. London:
Stevens and Haynes. 1870. We can find nothing but praise for the very uscful and exhaustive
work under notice. Its author, an able lawyer and a man of indefatigable research, taking Smith's Leading Cases as his model, has applied the system adopted in that work to the Hindu Law of Inheritance, which he proposes to treat under fourteen heads. Of these heads eight are confined in Part I., and the remainder will be found in Part II., which is promised in six months. The subjects treated of in Part I. are Marriage, Studhan, Maintenance, Adoption, Guardianship, Benamee, Coparcenary, and Pension. One noticeable portion of the work is the Appendix, which in Part I. occupies rather more than one-third of the entire volume. The utility of this appendix will be seen when we explain that in the cases and notes in the body of the work constant reference is made to Menu Nareda, the Daya-Chaya with Metachshua, the Smriti Chandulia, and other less known Indian authorities. Now, wherever one of these authorities is referred to, a verbatim English translation of the text of the passage is given in the Appendix, and thus the necessity of consulting the original is obviated. When Part II. is issued, and the work is complete, no Indian lawyer's library ought to be without it.
A Manual of the Hindu Law ; for the use of Students and
Practitioners. By Standish Grove Grady, Barrister-at-Law, Recorder of Gravesend, Reader on Hindu and Mohammedan Law, and the Laws in force in British India, to the Inns of Court, Author of “The Law of Fixtures and Dilapidations, Ecclesiastical and Lay," and joint Author of "The Law and Practice of the Crown Side of the Court of Queen's Bench ;" Author of “ The Hindu Law of Inheritance,” “ The Mohammedan Law of Inheritance and Contract,” and Editor of “The Institutes of Menu and of the He laya." Wildy & Son, London. D'Cruiz
Advertising and Printing Co., Limited, Madras. We have already availed ourselves of the opportunity of examining and reviewing, at the time of their publication, the works above enumerated, by the same author, and although we bestowed commendation on the “Hindu Law of Inheritance,” when it appeared, as a work admirably adapted to meet the wants of the Bench and the professional practitioner, yet we unticipated that it would not be found to be elementary enough to convey to the beginner a knowledge of the principles of Hindu Law. We are glad to find that the author has made that discovery for himself. No doubt, in discharging his duties as Reader on Hindu Law to the Inns of Court he felt that the student required information upon the law of a more elementary character than his work on * The Hindu Law of Inheritance” was capable of imparting ; not that we think the student would be justified or could dream of dispensing with the latter, for, after he has familiarised himself with the principles of the law, he will require a VOL. XXX.-NO. LX.
more recondite and practical work elucidating the principles which he has already acquired.
The work before us professes to be a mere Manual for the use of students, but both the bench and the profession will find in it a work of practical utility as embodying principles with which they frequently require to refresh their memory during the conduct of a suit. It has long been a stigma upon the schools of law in both England and India, that no steps had been taken by the heads of our Legal Seminaries, or by the Indian Government, or by the Civil Service Commissioners, both here and in India, for the purpose of providing elementary legal works for the education and instruction of the vast number of gentlemen who are employed in the Civil Service in administering the law to the natives of India. But that they should be compelled to draw their knowledge of the law from works published forty years ago by authors, no doubt, of the highest legal learning and reputation as lawyers and scholars, is matter of surprise and regret, particularly when we know that errors must have crept into these works in consequence of the great disadvantages under which their authors laboured in preparing their works for publication, arising from their ignorance, more or less, of Indian languages, especially Sanscrit, within which the law had been locked up, few text books being known or accessible to them through translations; the corflicting authorities of the various schcols, rendered still more so, by the discordant, inconsistent, or contradictory comments, or explanations of glossators ; the difficulties of separating the living doctrines of the law from its fossil principles; and when we add to all these, the inherent obscurities of the code itself, often based upon fantastic analogies or upon religious doctrines, hard for the western intellect to apprehend; and last, but not least, the absence of any clear line of distinction between the illegal and morally reprehensible, so significantly pointed out by the factum valet doctrine of the Bengal school, these obstacles, no doubt, enhance our admiration of the singleness of purpose, acuteness and depth of research, which enabled those writers to evolve order out of such a chaos, and to present in a readable form and succinct compass, the doctrines of Hindu law.
But these very obstacles at the same time engendered, and prove, the reasonableness of the objections that have been raised against those works, and account for the errors that have crept into them, and which our more intimate acquaintance with the sources of the law, enables us to detect, and justifies the condemnation of those works as obsolete and unsuited to convey a correct idea of the existing state of the law which, during the long period alluded to, has undergone, like our common law during the same interval, great changes and modifications. Yet these are the works, no doubt, in the absence of more recent publications, which are placed by the Civil Service Commissioners, both here and in India, in the hands of students, who are thus compelled to carry an obsolete law for administration amongst a people who are by nature lawyers themselves, and who soon discover the ignorance and shortcomings of those who preside over them as judges. We are indebted to Mr. Grady, as must also all those who have the welfare of India at heart, for the pains he has taken to remove this blot from our legal insti. tutions, and we hope they will not be slow to recognise his labours. The work under review is admirably adapted to meet the requirement alluded to. It embodies in a form suited for a beginner the living principles of the law. It points out the decisions which have been overruled by more recent declarations of the law as laid down in the High Courts and in the Privy Council. The work contains very full chapters on the sources of the law, on marriage, adoption, minority, property, charges on property, disqualifications for inheritance, alienation (a) inter vivos (6) by will, inheritance or succession, partition, and the law of contract. The author intends it as a companion work to his Mohammedan law of Inheritance and Contract Mr. Grady has very clearly pointed out the divergence
. in the different schools, marking the distinctions in each, so that it is adapted for each of the schools of law. He has attempted to supply the want of new editions of Strange and Macnaughten by embodying all therein that is now law, and has poivted out those doctrines which are not supported by the authorities cited, and has added the principles of recent decisions, without encumbering the work too much by reference to the names of cases, which often only tend to perplex and distract the student. We observe that the work is dedicated to Sir Edward Ryan, the Chief Commissioner of the Civil Service, and Vice-Chairman of the Council of Legal Education. We need hardly commend it to his especial attention as “a work most needed in his department, and one capable of removing the stigma that attach to us for sending out to India Civil Servants who have but imperfect knowledge of the laws they have to administer.”
The Mayor's Court of London Procedure Act, 1857, with Notes and
an Outline of the Practice, &c. By J. P. Yeatman, of Lincoln's Inn, Esq., Barrister-at-Law. London : Wildy. 1870.
TWELVE months back, in an article “ The City Courts” (Vol. XXVIII, p. 208), we referred to this very useful City Court. The year just closed has still further increased the business in the Mayor's Court, while that in all the superior courts has diminished, and the dislike for County Court practice appears in no way abated.
This little book professes to be a guide to the procedure and practice of this most useful City Court, and certainly a reliable guide would just now be much prized by suitors. We regret to say that a perusal of Mr. Yeatman's manual does not enable us to recommend
The author is evidently not himself a practitioner in the Court, and although, as he acknowledges in the preface, he has “borrowed very largely" from the Registrar's able work on the practice, we fear that a suitor relying solely on our author would find himself frequently embarrassed.
The author seems a strong partisan for corporation privileges, and considers the Court a Queen's Court, quite equal to the superior courts at Westminster, and some rather lengthy observations of a disparaging character are made on the judgments of the Exchequer Chamber and House of Lords in Cox and Others v. The Mayor, Śc., of London ; and in the preface the author desires to “ draw attention to the ancient rights and privileges of the City, that the silent encroachments of time and envy may be swept away, and the Court restored to its former state of usefulness.”
This is a bad opening for a guide. We are not told what has done the mischief and affected the former usefulness of the Court. Surely the author knows that within some twenty years the Court was so close and exclusive as to be limited to four counsel and six attorneys. Although the most ancient in the kingdom, does he consider opening the Court to himself and the whole profession an injury to City privileges ? Hardly this, perhaps, but from some remarks he really does object to the Act, obtained by the City in 1857 for regulating and extending their jurisdiction, on the extraordinary ground of“ its having crippled the powers of the Court,” and the “apparent ignorance of the full extent of the power of the Court,” shown by the f .ners of the Mayor's Court Act, 1857, on which this little book professes to be written.
The whole of the Mayor's Court Act is given without omitting the sections in judgment summonses and commitments practically repealed by the Debtors Act 1869, and including the old forms of procedure now wholly useless, the new rules, issued December, 1869, being only inserted by an afterthought in part of the impression after binding.
The Debtors Act is thus quoted (p. 49), “Now by the 32 & 33 Vict. c. 62, except in cases under 501., no person shall be imprisoned for making default in payment of a sum of money, except, &c. (then partly following s. 4 of the Act).” But where does our author get his exception we have italicised? There is no such restriction in the Act, and the only reference to debts not exceedirg 501. is, as to the issue of debtors' summons by the County Court.
On the procedure of the Court the author is equally careless. an example, when referring in p. 12 to the Order in Council extending the Bills of Exchange Act to this Court, we are told that such order " very properly assumed that this being a Queen's Court, actions would be commenced by writ of summons in the Queen's name," &c. Also “ that actions under the Bills of Exchange Act must be commenced by writ of summons.” And, “ that power was given by such Order in Council to make or alter writs, so that it appears utterly monstrous that actions are not commenced in a legitimate manner and consistently with the dignity of this high court by issue of the Queen's writ.”
All this strong language because the Mayor's Court preserves the ancient practice of plaint, although when issued upon a bill of exchange the bill is copied at length, and full notice given defendant as required by the Bills of Exchange Act. This censure of the