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P. Ramanatha Iyer, B.A., B.L., owing to the quick sale of the first edition. The cases are included down to the end of Jan. 1911, and the book is in all respects well up to date.

The general arrangement is clear and systematic, and the copious index refers both to pages and cases.

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BOOKS RECEIVED. Watts on the Naironal Insurance Bill. Stevens and Song Limited, 119 and 120, Chancery-lane. Price 33. net.

** Universal Mortgage and Property Register and Reminder. John Heywood Limited, Manchester.

Property Owners' Register, Record, and Reminder. John Heywood Limited, Manchester.

Mews' Digest of English Case Law. Quarterly lesue, Jaly. Stevens and Sons Limited, 119 and 120, Chanoery-lane ; Sweet and Maxwell Limited, 3, Chancery.lane. Price 58.

Low's Handbook to the Charities of london 1911. Charles H. Sell, 168, Fleet-street, E.C. Price 18.

Cubitt on Building in London. Constable and Co. Limitari. 10, Orange-street, Leicester-square, W.C. Price 319. Ud. pet.

LORD LANSDOWNE and Mr. Balfour have in support of their policy of acceptance of the Parliament Bill the great precedent laid down by the Duke of Wellington in analogous circumstances in 1832, on whicb, years afterwarde, in a letter addressed to Lord Derby in 1846 in the crisis of the Corn Law struggle, when it was a question whether the House of Lords ehould resist or yield, be thus commented :

Upon finding the difficulties in which the late King William was involved by a promise made to create peers—the number, I believe, indefinite-I determined myself and I prevailed upon others, the number very large, to be atsent from the House on the discussion of the last stages of the Reform Bill, after the nego tiations had failed for the formation of a new Administration. This course gave at the time great dissatisfaction to the party, potwithstanding that I believe it saved the House of Lords at the time and tbe Constitution of the country.”


LORD Halsbury's threatened uncompromising resistance to the passing into law of the Parliament Bill will recall insta noes in the careers of ex-Lord Chancellors who have become leaders of irreconcilable Oppositions. Lord Eldon as an ex-Lord Chancellor resisted Catholic Emancipation to the point of seriously urgiog George IV., in two prolonged private audiences, to withhold the aesent of the Crown to the Bill, He fiercely contested at every stage the Reform Bill, denouncing the proposed creation of new peers as unconstitutional, and only withdrew his opposition when its futility was made apparent. Lord Brougham, after the re-establishment of the Melbourne Administration in 1839, virtually led the Opposition in the House of Lords and succeeded in carrying five propositions in the House of Lords censuring the Irish policy of the Government. Lord Lyndhurst, in 1856, as an ex-Lord Chancellor suceeeded in defeating the Government scheme of life peerages in a speech which Lord Campbell declared was the most wonderful he had ever heard. It would bave been admirable for a man of thirty-five-for a man of eighty-five it was miraculous.”


The present political crisis is of exceptional interest to the student of constitutional development and to the peroser of legal bistory and biography, to whom it furnishes a store of analogies and parallelisma In the debates on the Parliament Bill, no writer has been frequently quoted than Mr. Bagebot, whose great work, The English Constitution; was published so far back as 1865, and whose death took place in 1877, more than a generation before the present burning questions had become actual. Mr. Asquith in his momentous letter to Mr. Balfour, which was published on the 22nd inst., sketching the policy on which the Government had determined, echoee, albeit unconsciously, the following exposition by Mr. Bagebot of the remedy in the event of an irreconcilable difference between the Houses of Lords and Commons : There ought to be in every Con. atitution an available authority somewhere. The sovereign power must be come-at-able. And the English have made it so. The House of Lords at the passing of the Reform Act of 1832 was unwilling to concur with the Lower Chamber. But it did congur, The Crown has the authority to create new peers, and the King of the day had promised the Ministry of the day to create them. The House of Lords did pot liko tbe preoedent and they passed the Bill. The power was not used, but its existence was as useful as its energy. Just as the knowledge that his men can strike makes a master yield in order that they may not strike, so the knowledge that their House would be swamped at the will of the King-at the will of the people -made the Lorde yield to the people" : (Bagebot's English Consti. tution, pp. 98-99).

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The attitude of the King in this time of fierce political excitement is in itself an unconscious, though significant, proof of the development of constitutional morality since 1832. Mr. Asquith’s announcement in an open letter to tbe Leader of Opposition in the House of Commons, and his transmission of a copy of that letter to the Leader of Opposition in the House of Lords, that His Majesty has been pleased to signify that he will consider it bis duty to accept and act on the advice of bis Ministers to exercise his prerogative to secure the passing into law of the Parliament Bill, is in sharp oontrast with the distinct personal action of William IV. in 1832. In that year William IV., having at length agreed to create a sufficient number of peers to carry the Reform Bill, yet anxious to avoid so extreme a measure, addressed a circular letter, without the knowledge of bis Ministers, disguading Opposition peers from proceeding to extremities. “ This interference of the King,” writes Sir Erskine May, “with the independent deliberations of the House of Lorde was in truth an act no less unconstitutional than the creation of peers - the one being an irregular interference of the Crown, the other an extreme exercise of an undoubted prerogative. But it was resorted to, not to extend the authority of the Crown or to Parliament, but to restore harmonious action to those powers of the State wbich had been brought into dangerous opposition and conflict”: (May’s Constitutional History of England, i., pp. 144-145). The strictly impersonal attitude of King George V, in the exercise of his prerogative on the advice of his Ministers responsible to the House of Commons and tbrough the House of Commons to the people constitutes a landmark in the development of Cabinet Government.

It is somewhat remarkable that in Mr. Baliour's strictures in his speech on the 24th inst. on the contemplated creation of peers he confined his illustration, by way of precedent of the impropriety of such a step, to the creation of twelve peers in 1711. There are, however, three instances of creations of peers in greater numbers tban on that occasion, and, of these, while two belong to the political history of Ireland, one, strange to say, which seems to bave been overlooked, belongs to the political history of England, and took place in the Reform period. In Ireland, in 1776, a wholesale peerage creation was thus characterised by Mr. Lecky : “ The simultaneous creation of twelve peers in order to secure a majority was justly regarded as one of the worst acts of the Tory Ministry of Aone, but now it was far surpassed. Eighteen Irish peers were created in a single day, and seven barons and five viscounts were at the same time raised a step in the peerage. The terms of the bargain were well known to be an engagement to gopport the Government by their votes in the House of Lords by their substitutes and votes in the House of Commons: (History of England in the Eighteenth Century, iv., p. 441). In 1799.1800, for Union seryioes in Ireland, no less than twenty-eight Irish peerages were created, six Irieb'peers obtained English peerages on account of Irish services, and twenty Irish peers obtained a bigher rank in the peerage : (History of England in the Eighteenth Century, viii., pp. 397-398). In this country there was a large creation of peers during the Reform crisis, to which the following reference is made by Sir Erekine May: “ Already before the second reading (of the Reform Bill of 1831, whiob was rejected in the House of Lords), no less than sixteen new peers

had been created in order to correct in some meaguro the notorious disproportion between the two parties in the Hougo of Lords, but a majority was still known to be adverse to the Bill. A further creation of peers in order to ensure the success of the measure was then in contemplation, but the large number that would be required for that purpose, the extreme harshness of such a course, and the hope, not ill-founded, that many of the peers should yield to the spirit of tbe times, discouraged Ministers from yet advising this last resource of power”: (May's Constitutional History of England, i., p. 309).

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The vows which some meribers of the House of Lords are making, never to enter that assembly again after it has been deprived of its present powers, will recall the fact that a similar vow was made by an eminent judicial personage in the Reform crisis in 1832, and was kept both in letter and spirit. Charles Abbot, who, having been a puisne judge first of the Common Pleas and tben of the King's Bench, was made Lord Chief Justice in 1818 and was created a peer 88 Baron Tenterden in 1827, in April 1832 opposed the Reform Bill in the

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last spoooh be over delivered in Parliament. In concluding his speech he said : “This measure, my Lords, leaves nothing untouched in the existing stato of the oleotion franchise.

to vest all tho fanotions of Government in the other House of Parliament, and, if it were to pass, there would be nothing left for this House or for the Crown but to obey the mandate of the Commons. Never, never, my Lorde, shall I enter the doors of this House after it has become the phantom of its departed greatness.” Lord Tenterden was as good as his word. After the Reform Bill had received the Royal Aggent, Lord Campbell tells us, he never more entered the Chamber of the House of Lords.

In the House of Commons, on Monday, Mr. Austen Chamberlain asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he bad made inquiry into the facts of the increment value duty case at Richmond, Yorksbire, and whether bo could make a statement on the subject.—Mr. Hobhouse, who replied, said : Notice of appeal against the assessment to increment value duty bas been given; and pending the result of such appeal, my right bop. friend is unable to make any statement on the matter.

Mr. Pretyman asked the Chanoellor of the Exchequer how many estates were now awaiting valuatiun for probate, and how many bad been waiting for more than twelve months.-Mr. Hobhouse: I am not aware of the number of estates awaiting valuation for probate. Io estates in which probate has been granted a valuation of the realty is made for the purposes of death duty claims thereon, and investi. gations which fall to be made in the course of such valuation must necessarily take time. I understand that the number of cases await. ing valuation is somewhat above the normal; but now that the valuation department is better equipped and in working order, it is hoped that the valuations will be made expeditiously-Mr. Pretyman : Is it not possible to give a specific answer? If I put tbis question down again will the bon. gentleman say how many estates are now awaiting valuation and how many have been waiting for twelve months ?-Mr. Hobhouse: I will endeavour to obtain the information for the bop. gentleman.

Mr. MoKinnon Wood, replying to Sir William Byles, said there need be po public apziety as to tbe negotiations for an Anglo-American Arbitration Treaty. The discussion of points rather of form than of eubstanoe bas taken some time, but I believe that the two Governo monts are now practically agreed as to the terme. I cannot say anything as to negotiations between the l'aited States and other Powers, of which I am not informed.

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In the House of Lords, on the 20th inat., the Rights of Way Bill Wg read a tbird time.

lo the House of Commons, Mr. Jobo asked the Secretary for Foreign Affairs whether he was in any way cognisant of the reported negotiations for a treaty of absolute arbitration between the United States of America and France; and whether negotiations of a similar character were proceeding betweən this country and France.—Sir E. Greg: I cannot make statements about negotiations between other Powers to which we are not a party. The answer to the last part of the question is in the negative.

Mr. Churohill, in reply to Mr. Peto, stated that in view of the satisfactory reduction in the number of commitments to prison in the goutb and west of Eogland he hoped that it might become possible to closo, for a time at any rate, ore or more of the smaller prisons.

Mr. Boytop asked the Home Secretary whether he would consider the desirability of bringing the navigation of an aeroplane over the Henloy Regatta course during the progress of the regatta within the purview of seot. 1 of the Aerial Navigation Act; and whether be would take action under seot. 2 to prevent in future any aircraft from navigating the Henley course after it had been cleared for racing by the Thames Conservancy.—Mr. Dudley Ward : If the matter is brought to the potioe of my right hon. friend by the proper authorities before the next regatta he will consider whether or not an order should be made under sect. I of the Act.

Mr. Morrell asked leave to move the adjournment of the House to call attention to the case of Miss Malecka, a British subject, who had boen imprisoned for more than fifteen weeks in a gaol at Warsaw ; and to the failure of His Majesty's Government to take effective steps to obtain from the Russian Government any particulars of the oharge against her, or, failing that, an order for her release.-The Speaker said that the motion was premature. The Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs had on the previous day stated that the British Ambassador at St. Petersburg had been instructed to ask particulars of the charge against this lady, and, failing receiving them, to ask for an order from the Russian Government for her release.—Mr. Morrell said that the British Ambassador had already made several requests for particulars, the lady's bealth was suffering, and he submitted that the caso had become urgent.-The Speaker : I think it would be a falso step for the House to discuss this matter while the Government has instructed the Ambassador to make application to the Russian Goveroment, and pending a reply anytbing more discourteous to the Russian Government than for the House to discuss the subject I cannot conceive.—Mr. Wedgwood asked whether it was not a matter of urgent public importance that a British subject, and a woman, too, should be kept in a Russiso prison without any charge baving been formulated against her.-The Speaker : It is of no use going back on the old ground. The matter then dropped.


In the House of Lords, on Tuesday, on the report of amendments to the County Courts Bill, the Earl of Halsbury moved to omit the first clause of the Bill, which gives County Courts uolimited jurisdic. tion to hear any action subject to the right of removal to the Supreme Court on the application of tho defendant. He contended that the addition to the work of County Courts of all classes of cases would vastly add to the delay in litigation wbich already occurred under that system and would cause postponement of those small cases for the speedy decision of which the County Courts were set up. The Bill would entirely destroy the real purpcee for which those courts were instituted, and, by permitting appeals on questions of fact as well as of law in cases in which over £50 was involved, would tend to ncrease litigation.-Lord Gorell said the Bill had received the support of the Law Society and of all the branches of that organisation throughout the country.-Lord Robson objected to the principles of the Bill, saying that the High Court now got through its business with expedition, wbile the Čuunty Courts were already oongested. Lord Mersey contended that County Courts were originally instituted and, in his opinion, were still intended for cheap, satisfactory, and speed y disposal of poor men's cases.—Lord Alverstone said the proper place for important cases to be heard was the High Court, and no case had been made for sending King's Bench actions for trial in the County Court. – The Lord Chancellor said all the lawyers, except Lord Gorell, were, as usual, against law reform. Not many years ago the same dreadful forecasts were made in regard to the Criminal Appeal Bill, which had turned out a great success. It was because the Bill meant cheap justice that the commercial community was on its side. So were the solicitors, and the only people against it were Bar counsel. County Courts were not congested. The average work of a County Court judge was 153 sittings a year, and done worked for more than 170 days. The opposition to the Bill was of an interested professional character.The Marquess of Lansdowne said whilst it was generally conceded that the Bill was a good one, and there was a considerable amount of concurrence as to the object with which the first clause bad been framedto oheapen litigation in the interests of poorer suitors—the layman found himself in a difficulty by the diametrically opposed opinions of high legal authorities as to whether the clause would have that effect. It was conceivable tha; the Royal Commission on Divorce and Matrimonial Causes might be in favour of throwing new and additional work on the County Courts by extending their jurisdiction

cases of divorce. Might it not be desirable to allow the whole question of extending the powers of those courts to stand over until the commission reported ? 'If, however, the amendment were pressed he felt that, in view of the division of authority, he would not be justified in voting for a proposal wbich would impose new duties upon these already overburdened tribunals.—The amendment was defeated on a division by thirty-seven to twenty-one.-Minor amendments having been disposed of, the Bill was reported.

Viscount Haldane propneed the second readiog of the Official Secrets Bill, whiob is intended to re-enact the Official Secrets Act of 1889, with amendments. He said that the subject bad been under consideration for a long time by the Defence Committee in consultation with the naval and military authorities. Ite purpose was to strengthen the law in regard to official secrets and espionage, and it applied to our own countrymen as well as to strangers. The main change which the Bill made was a change in procedure. Under the Act of 1889 it was necessary to prove the purpose of any person obtaining wrongfully official information. Now the opus of explainiog the purpose was laid upon the person suspected. Not many months ago there was a diligent stranger at the fortifications at Dover who explained his presence by saying tbat he wanted to hear the gingiog tbe birds. In anotber at Lough Swilly

a man found sketching the fortifications, but proof against

In the House of Commons, on the 21st inet., the Salford Hundred Court of Record Bill was read & second time and on the motion of Mr. J. Pease referred to a Select Committee.

On the motion for the second reading of the Expiring Laws Cootinuanoe Bill, Sir F. Banbury asked for an assurance that the com. mittee stage would be taken at an early hour, so that there might be full opportunity for discussion.-Mr. Gulland said be was sure the Prime Minister would be quite ready to make an arrangement of that kind. -The Bill was read a second time and referred to a committee of the whole House.

Mr. Montagu, the Under-Secretary for India, in a short explanation of the Indian High Courts Bill said that it had become necessary to tako steps to relieve the congestion of legal business in India, where the delay of justice sometimes meant a denial of justice. The time had oome for raising the maximum number of judges in the Calcutta High Court, and it might become necessary in the future to increase also the maximum number of judges in the other High Courte. Provision was made for the establishment by Letters Patent of new courts of the game class, as it was undesirable that the Government of India should have to wait, before coping with circumstances that might arise, until fresh legislation could be passed in England. It would not be wise to compel the Goveroment of India to establish chief courts when considerations of prestige and dignity pointed to the establishment of High Courts as the preferable course. But, as the Under-Secretary said aiterwards, it was not intended to oreate such courts immediately. Power was also given by the Bill to the Governor-General in Council to appoint temporary judges in order that arrears might be cleared off.—The Bill having been read a second time, a resolution was passed in committee authorising in certain cases tha payment out of the revenues of Iodia of gratuities to the widows or other representatives of persons who have been on the estab.igh. ment of the Secretary of State in Council.



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that the mitigation of any hardships suffered by such a body of men must have everybody's sympathy. He explained that depositions could be taken in certain cases, and every effort was made to prevent the detection of witnesses, at any rate whose evidence was not absy. lutely essential. It ehould always be remembered that these inquiriee updoubtedly contributed in a remarkable degree to the interests of seafaring men generally. A great deal of information had been obtained from them which had added greatly to the safety of navigation. Therefore in tbeir desire to prevent hardsbip op individuals they must be careful not to do anything that would prejudice the general safety; The question of jury service concerned the Home Office. They had received very few complaints on that score, but they quite realised the bardsbip. The whole question of jury service was engaging the attention of the Home Secretary, wbo had already promised an inquiry, and the case of sea meu would no doubt be considered when that inquiry was entered upon. He could ooly say . generally that both the Board of Trade and the Home Office were very anxious to take into consideration any cases of special hardsbip, and to do all that was poesible to mitigate them.--Lord Ellenborough maintained that jury service was an exceediogly unfair and unjust burden to put on seafaring men.

In the House of Commons, Mr. Ashley, on bebalf of Mr. Pretyman, asked the Secretary to the Treasury how many estates were now a waiting valuation for probate, and how many bad been waiting for more than twelve months.- Mr. Hobhouse: The number of death duty cases with the valuation branch is nox 18,880, of which 582 have been with that branch more than a year.

The financial resolution relating to the amendment of the Indian High Courts Act 1861 passed through committee.

In the House of Lords, on Thursday, the County Courts Bill was read a third time.

b'm after his explanations was impossible. The places barred to the public under the present Act were too few, because during the last twenty years other places had grown into importance. The Bill simplified the powers of detention, and as to espionage the powers were strengthened. He did not say there was much espionage io this country, but it was a great temptation to anyone with expert know. Hidge to use such information ag at present he could pick up.-Viscount Milleton agreed that there need be no apprehension for f eling that the Bill bad been drawn too severely. Only a few days ago an officer of high rank informed him that he had sent two young

fficers to a fortress to take sketches of the guns, and they returned with the diaposition of every gun in the place. He congratulated I ord Haldane on having taken the subject up and utilised his legal knowledge to fill up a gap wbich existed in the law. He knew from cases he would not mention that the Bill was most urgeoily needed in the interests of the country.-Lord Alverstone also welcomed the measure, statiog that more than once the authorities bad found it d fficult to institute prosecutiocs because of gips in the existing law. --The Bill was read & second time.

Oo the motion of Lord Southwark, the Intestate Husband's Estate (Sootland) Bill was read a third time and passed.

To the House of Commops, in committee on the vote for the Ioland Revenue, which had been put down in order that tbe administration of the land clauses of the Finance Act of 1910 might be discussed, Mr. Pretyman called attention to the manner in which valuations for tbe purposes of the increment land tax were made and to the bardships wbich bad resulted. The valuations, he affirmed, were not being carried out fairly and reasonably, and to prove bis case he gave several instapoes of questionable procedure. After restating the circumstances of the valuation of Å small bouge at Richmond, in Yorkshire, which ho bad set out fully in a letter which appeared in the Times on the 15th July, and after citing other cases, becom. plained that the system of valuation devised by the Land Department of the Ioland Revenue made it almost impossible for owners to a derstand how matters stood. He protested energetically agaiost the limitation of the period within which an appeal could be lodged against & provizional valuation to sixty days. This was wholly insufficient. That anjustice sbould not be done was all the more necessary, because it was the poor man wbo obiefiy suffered under the new taxation. The Solicitor-General, dealing with the question whether there was a right of appeal against & provisional valuation of a site on an occasion, to use the technical phraseology, admitted that the language of the Act was open to question, but tbe intention was to give a proprietor a right of appeal before the referee before he was fixed with duty, and he was of opinion that the Act gave bim the right.--Mr. Hobbouse submitted that difficulties and misunderetandings always arose when a new and complicated Act was brought into operation. But he thought the complaints that_bad been made tbat day were exaggerated. Replying to Mr. Wedgwood and other extreme laod taxers op his side of the House, who had pressed for an acceleration of the valuation of the land of the country, be said that in the course of the present year the staff of valut rs had been increased by 187, and that 360 additional clerks had been appointed. This would enable the Government to keep the promise that the valuation would be completed in five years from the date wben the Finance Act camo into operation. His department, he assured Mr. Pretyman, had no wish to exact from the taxpayer a half penny more than the State was entitled to receive. The instructions to the valuers showed that this was the case, and he would lay a copy of these instructions on the table of tbe Houge.

Ms. MacCallum Scott asked the Cinder-Secretary for India wbetber, in view of the abuses which had been shown to exist under the present law in connection with confessions extorted by the police from 808 pected persons in lodia, he could give an assurance that the sections of the Criminal Procedure Code which allowed the police to obtain confessions from prisoners detained in police custody, and then had them recorded before a magistrate for the purpose of being used against the prisoner at bis trial, would be repealed or amended at the next session of the Viceroy's Legislative Council.Mr. Montagu : The Secretary of State will inquire of the Government of India when effect is likely to be given to the changes indicated as being under coneideration in my reply to my boo. friend's question of the 29th June. I may mention that in the meantime the various administrative orders governing the recording of confessions in the different provinoes have been collated by the Government of India, who are about to issue instructions to local Governments where necessary to supplement their orders with new rules providing greater safeguards against a buse.

Captaio Faber asked the Prime Minister if he would state wbether, with a view to ascertaining the views of women on their desire to have the Parliamentary vote, he would cause the Referendum to be used amongst women only with that object -- Mr. Asquith: The course suggested by the hon. member would require legislation which I am not prepare to propose.

Mr. Churchill, on Monday, informed Mr. Chancellor that the question of the splashing of mud by motor omnibuses was engaging ibe attention of the Commissioner of Police, and the reason he had not made a regulation insisting on the wee of some form of mud. guard which would prevent this nuisance was that, in spite of inquiry, inspection, and actual trials, no mud-guard bad been found which did not entail serious disadvantages and dangere. He could not ask the commissioner to enforce the use of special mud-gourds till a suitable type was invented. If the road surfaces were improved it would effest considerable abatement of the nuisance, and this was a matter in the hands of the local authorities.

The following question addressed to the Attorney General and his reply thereto on the 18th inst. will be perused with interest by members of the Legal Proleesion :-Mr. Touche asked the AttorneyGeneral whether he is aware that the rules of the Supreme Court, which require that, in an action brought by debenture-holders in the Chancery Division of the High Court of Justice to enforce their security, registered debentures must be produced in chambers by the holder personally or by a solicitor, cause expense and inconvenience, and might usefully be dispensed witb, ha ving. regard to the provisions of the Companies (Consolidation) Act 1908, sect. 100; and will be approach the proper authorities to suggest that this rule be altered, and that the register of debenture-bolders, required by the above-mentioned Act to be kept, be accepted as primâ facie evidence of the persons entitled to participate in the benefit of the judgment, thereby avoiding the expense at present caused to the investing public in this respect ?-Sic Rufus Isaacs : The proper authority to deal with this matter is the Rule Committee of the Supreme Court, and I will bring it to their attention for their consideration, with a view to their determining #bether the suggestion of the hon. member can be accepted.

“Lex" writes as follows to the Times of the 21st inst. :-“May I ask for space to make a few comments on the eeches made in the House of Lords in committee on the County Courts Bill on the 12th July ? The objections taken as a wbole are but a repetition of those raised on the second reading. To deal generally with them : Lord Robson mentions a case of a court where a barrister bad to wait from eleven o'clock to tbree o'clock while 200 judgment summonses were disposed of. He works this out as nearly one a minute,' and says that he could not help thinking that a little more time might have been given to those judgment eum monses? If Lord Robson had inquired he would have ascertained that a large proportion of judgment summonses are disposed of by the judgment debtor having filed or otherwise given his consent to pay by instalmonts. These filed consents are all arranged by the registrar's clerk beforehand and the verbal consents are stated by witnesses in the witness-box. In either once the matter is disposed of in a few seconds, leaving of course more time for the cases in which the debtor's means have to be proved. The arguments against the Bill were mainly directed to show that all the delay consequent upon cases being tried in the County Court arises from what I may call the 'ioherent vice' of the County Court system. Tbe truth is tbat in all cases in which coupsel are engaged, the delay in very great part arises by reason of counsel's other engagements, and is not in any way due to the inability of the court or the judge to bear them. The judges are only too williog to afford every taoility they can, or to give special days for hearing in addition to the regular fixed daye. Lord Alverstone urged the same objections as Lord Robson, and fell into another fallaoy. He stated that the sittings were arranged “ months before band,” which neces. sitated special cases being eandwiched in amonget the ordinary work. It is true that the days of the sittings are fixed months beforehand, but the lists of the pages to be heard on those days are not arranged


In the House of Lords, on Wednesday, Lord Muskerry called atten. tion to the disabilities under which officers and others in the mercbant service laboured in respect to detention ashore for the purpose of giving evidence at Board of Trade inquiries into shipping casualties and at police-court and a seize trials dealing with criminal offences in British merchant sessels. He also complained of the hardebip on soamen when so detaioed of being summoned for jury service. He urged that these grievances might be met if it were made lawful for evidence to be taken on deposition or by commission, and that a short Act should be passed for the purpose. -Lord Herschell said


until the bearing day nearly approaches. With regard to the poor man' desiring his case to be heard by the judge rather than the registrar, the answer is that in the very large majority of cases under £5 the liability is admitted, the only question being one of amount. That question goes to the registrar as a matter of course in any event. The first and great objection to the increase of work seems to be that the judges have not time to do it. Considered only as a question ng the amount of work which the judges would perform in the course of the year, I do not think that they would object to, gay, twenty or even thirty days’ more work in the year than they perform at present, but this of course would carry with it a substantial increase in salary. But they are entitled to a good increase as the matter stands to-day, apart altogether from the present Bill. There always has been and is now a certain proportion of the Profession' which puts forward strenuous objection to any advancement in the status of the County Courts. Such objection is based too much in the interest of the Profession and too little in that of the public.'

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REFORM Dersus REVOLUTION. We have received the following :

Sir,-I shall be glad if you will allow me to call the attention of your readers to the petition which the committee of the British Constitution Association has presented to the House of Commons. The petition appears to me to completely justify the Lords' amendments in the Parliament Bill. I append a quotation. Copies of the petition may be obtained from the association, 20, Tothill-street, S.W. 7, Pall Mall, July 25.

MARK 8. JUDGE. • That a redistribution of Seats is absolutely necessary before the House of Commons can be representative of the Electors is evident if the following facts are kept in mind, viz. : One half of the 670 members of the House of Commons, viz , 335, now represent 5 414,357 electors; the other 335 represent only 2,489,418 electors. The average of the one half is 16,162 per member; the average of the other half only 7431 per member. One half of the total electorate of 7,904,465 sepd 458 members into Parliament, the other half only 212. As stated in tho resolution quoted, Mr. Asquith has declared that our present electoral system is an inadequate and untrustworthy exponent of the real opinion of the People, and that he regarded it as a duty and a biodiog obligation on the Government to submit a really effective scheme of relorm. Not long since Lord Haldane said : 'The progress of democracy is simply the process of fashioning the instrument of government of the State to the more adequate power of giving expression to the general desire. No Government and no Minister bas the right to speak for the larger interpretation of the will of the nation. These weighty words of the Prime Minister and of the Minister for War appear to your Petitioners to show conclusively that the present House of Commons is not sufficiently representative of the Electors to justify the Government in advising the Crown to create Peers for the purpose of making this uore presentative House of Commons independent of the other branch of the Legislature. So fundamental an alteration of our Coostitution as a vital obange in the relationship of the two Houses of Parliament can only be made constitutionally in one of two ways, viz. : (1) By the consent oi both Houses, or (2) By the clearly declared will of the Electors. Therefore Your Petitioners Pray your Honourable House to accept the Amendments made by the House of Lords in the Parliament Bill (as a temporary measure) —which Amendments provide with regard to Bills pot adopted by both Houses-That a joint Committee, instead of the Speaker alone, shall decide whether a Bill is, or is not, a Money Bill; and That any Bill which (a) Would affect the existence of the Crown or the Protestant succession; or (b) Would establish a National Parliament in any part of the United Kingdom; or (c) In the opinion of the Joint Committee, raises an issue of great gravity upon which the judgment of the country has not been sufficiently ascertained-Shall not receive the Royal Assent until it has been approved by the Electors. Or failing the acceptance of these Amend. mente, your Petitioners pray that your Honourable House will add to the Bill & Referendum Claude 80 that differences between the two Houses may be settled by the direct vote of the Electors.”

PROGRESS IN PENOLOGY. In countries in which the principles of penology have made any progress, or are favourably considered, all forms of imprisonment are on their trial. Shall we favour the system of the rigorous seclusion of convicts ? Shall we prefer to this the association of prisoners under careful sopervision ? Shall we pronounce for a scheme like that of the Elmira Reformatory, a very strict institution, but not a prison of the ordinary sort. Strict seclusion or segregation, abandoned in England, is the method enforced at the well-known prison of Louvain, in Belgium. Here prisoners may be confined for life, and as the authorities in Belgium are not generous in the matter of release, it is usual to find there prisoners who have been deprived of their liberty for fifteen, twenty, twenty-five years, and even longer. A brief account of Louvain is given by M. Henri Joly in his latest volume, Problèmes de Science Criminelle. After an interval of eighteen years M. Joly recently paid a second visit to this prison, and saw and spoke, with prisoners whom he had interviewed on the first occasion, and wbo were still occupying the same cells. Out of 557 recluses, 161 were serving lise sentences. No prisoner in Louvain, it seems, is ever 10: moment in contact with another prisoner; the system oi separation is absolute. It is not, however, solitary confinement in the rigid sense of the term. Each convict, says M. Joly, is in communication five or six times a day with certain of the prison officers, who can be on kiodly and even in some degree familjar terms with their charges. The governor, it may be gathered is able to exercise a greater personal influence over them than would be possible in an English convict prison. The duties of the doctor are not confined to the sick in the infirmary; he must pay regular visits d'hygiène et de moralité. The work-masters are constantly to and fro. There are three chaplains, concerning whom we are told that the situation in Louvaio obliges them to be confidants more than mere preachers. “In short,” says M. Joly, “I satisfied myself that these prisoners contrive to endure easily enough fifteen or twenty years—sometimes more than thig—of an existence strictly cellular." Some of the older prisoners, he adds, display a kind of childish con. tentment (une sorte d'apaisement enfantin), but he insists that this is neither imbecility nor madness. It is perhaps scarcely surprising that in the course of years many prisoners grow accustomed to their cells. Some who, at the end of ten years, had the choice of transfer to an ordinary prison, declined it; others who elected for the cbange were glad to return to Louvain. After ten years of sucb confinement as this the mind of the prisoner can scarcely be quite normal. He has habituated himself to a life that is almost in the bighest degree unnatural; silence and the shades have become his element; he shuns his own kind. M. Joly conversed with several of the inmates of Louvain; he found them resigned, and some of them intelligent and even cheerful. These facts also may be accepted. An extended and severe captivity would tame most of us, and there are savage murderers in Louvain who have been reduced to the utmost docility. The question is, whether any community among us has earned the right to punish in this manner even the worst, most intractable, and most dangerous of its criminale. Lombroso, who did not hesitate to recommend perpetual banishment to penal colonies for recidivists with whom all customary devices have failed, was, we believe, thoroughly opposed to lifelong cellular captivity. By whatever means the rigours of such captivity is softened, it is cruel; nor must we lose sight of its great cost to the community.

We turn from M. Joly's account of Louvain to an article in the Chronicle last week, describing the experiments of Mr. Oswald West (the democratic governor of the State of Oregon) with the con victs of tbe Salem Penitentiary. Mr. West, who took up his duties last January, “conceived the idea of putting the convicts on their honour to work outside the prison without guarde.” Something of the kind has been tried before in America. The sense of justice and honour is, to be sure, not very bighly developed in criminals, but in how many prisons has its development been seriously attempted : Obermayer, at Detroit, constituted some 400 prisoners judges of each other's conduct, and found that some who had the blackest recorde proved themselves the best superintendents and teachers. Governor West gces farther than Obermayer :

There are now [says the correspondent of the Chronicle] 144 cod. victe, wbo are free to come and go, so far as physical restraint is concerned, and who are working quite unguarded at different places within a radius of five miles of the penitentiary. Only one man has abused the privilege, and he is now confined in prison, the rest of the convicts having sent him to Coventry.

Recently Mr. West telephoned to the prison superintendent to sepd to his office at the State Capitol a convict serving a term of fifteed

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years. “Tell him," said the governor," to take the street car and come here, and don't send anyone with him.” The order was obeyed, and the prisoner duly presented himself. To put prisoners to work beyond the prison walls in the livery of convicts would be, of course, to attract to them an openviable amount of attention. They would probably rather work within the prison walls and under guard. These Salem men, it seems, wear ordinary clothes, and are thus not distinguishable from free labourers. They “work in brickyards, on making good roads, and doing farm work, and in every case

but that of the one man already mentioned honourably keep their word.

The governor is crediting them with a certain amount of their work, and at the end of his term every convict will bave money to start afresh with.

Salem, in a word, is at present more rationally administered than Louvain.

essential part of the Church's general oversight of morale, of seeing that the lives of Christians accord with the laws of God”: If the last, did the consistency, which had been traced in Church law, main. tain in the region of the recognition, age after age, of what were the laws of God," and of the meaning to be put on tbem? Did, for example, the best-informed intelligence in the Church of England of to-day accept the game text of the New Testament and apply to it the same canons of interpretation as the Churchmen and Convocations of the sixteenth century took for granted, when they required of their ecclesiastical laws that they should "stand with God's lawg”? These were matters outside the province of a lawyer, which were calling somewhat imperatively for a fuller consideration than they bad bitherto received.




BOROUGH QUARTER SESSIONS. Great Yarmouth, Monday, July 31, 10,30 Rotherham, Tuesday, Aug. 1, at 10.30 Liverpuol, Monday, July 31

Tenterden, Friday, Aug. 11 heading, Tuesday, Aug. 1, at 10.30 Wigan, Saturday, July 29.


It was bardly to be expected that there should be no sequel to the recent case in respect of armorial bearings in which the London County Council failed to convince a magistrate that a veterinary surgeon's use of the arms of the Veterinary College rendered him liable to licence duty. It is now decided to appeal against this decision on the ground that it will have an effecb adverse to revenue to the tune of some £12,000 per annum. It will be remembered that so far the law bas regarded armorial bearings as a family matter. If on appeal a different view should prevail, there will be some surprising results. Liability for licence duty may be challenged in respect of all sorts of user of armorial bearings. The legatee of half8.dozen spoons bearing a crest not his own, the man who begins a letter at his club and completes it at home, the barrister who commences a note in court on the official paper and completes it in his chambers, and possibly the tourist who buys a postcard with civic arms and dispatches the same to his or who gives his child a penny pot with these arms, may all alike be exposed to attack by the alert collector. Such a user of arms would scarcely be expected to justify the imposition of duty, whatever may be thought of the opportunity afforded by those whose“ · family pride must be denied ” unless for the display of the hereditary crest they are willing to pay the appointed price

DIVORCE AND THE CHURCH. Sir Lewis DIBDIN, Dean of the Arches, lectured on “The Law and Practice of the Church of England as to Divorce on Monday, says the Times, at Oxfoid in connection with the eeries of “ Lectures to Clergy” annually given at one or other of the Universities. He said that he did not intend to deal with the issues before tbe Divorce Commission, of which he was a member. On the other hand, the pending of the commission's report made it important for Churchmed, and especially for clergymen, to consider certain questions of historical fact-viz., What before, at, and after the Reformation was the law of the Church of England as to the indissolubility of marriage ; what was

the basis upon which that law rested ; and how far the practice of the law was consistent with its theory ? Expressions like the “law of the Church " 80 constantly on our lips that we were apt to assume they must have a real meaning without stopping to ask ourselves what it was. The Royal Commission's reference had to do with Christians and non-Christians alike, and its point of view must be that of the State itself. Nevertheless, the Church was deeply concerned in the whole matter, and having regard to the offices be held it seemed to him that the same reason which made it natural that he should be expected to serve on the commission made it natural that he should put such information as be possessed as to the Church law on the subject at the disposal of his fellow.Churchmen. Sir Lewis pointed out that up to the Reformation the Church Courts administering canon law treated marriage as indissoluble, and that the Reformation made no difference in this respect.

He combated the statement made by the Divorce Commission of 1853 that the “Reformatio Legum,” which allowed divorce for adultery or desertion, though admittedly never formally adopted, was acted upon in practico for the latter half of the sixteenth century. He stated that after inquiry he had been unable to find any single case where divorce a vinculo for post-nuptial offences had been granted by the Ecclesiastical Courte, and that the testimony of legal writere, and of common law judges like Sir Edward Coke, was directly hostile to this contention. But while no one in ih; sixteenth century doubted that Church law upheld the indissolubility of marriage, opinion was very much divided to whether "the law of God” did not allow divorce for adultery. He cited Bishop Andrewes and six other divines egainst

this view, and Bisbop Cosin and nine other writers in favour of it. After stating the history of the development of private divorce Acte, of which it was said there were about 200 prior to the General Divorce Act of 1857, Sir Lewis Dibdin declared that that Act made no attempt to alter the law of the Church of England. The State withdrew from the Church's jurisdiction one department of law which until then the Chureh, with the sanction of the State, bad administered, in order that the State might deal with it in its own way. Discussing the Canons of 1603, the lecturer said they were important, not because they provide for divorce a vinculo—the notion that they do so arose from a mere misunderstanding of the terms used—but because they are altogether silent about it. He submitted that the result of the evidence he had adduced establish that the law of the Church of England from before the Reformation till the present time was that the tie of marriage wus indissoluble except by the death of che of the parties, and that, while this was the theory, the practice must be held, in the light of the overwhelming evidence we possess, to have been consistent with the theory until 1857, when the Divorce Act pat an end to ecclesiastical action in the matter.

Sir Lewis added that be was conscious that the special subject of his lecture left untouched many momentous questions connected with it. Bebind the letter and the practice of Church law and behind the legislative apparatus for the manufacture of Church law there loomed greater matters still. By what right did tbe Christian Church dictate to its members as to marriage and the dissolution of marriage ? Was it a function of the Church of Christ to define the nature and to legislate on the incidents of the social relations of Christians; and if so, was this power exercigable by the clergy alone or by clergy and laity jointly? "Or was it simply a habit begun in the infanoy of Christian institutions when paganism made interference inevitable, and preserved ever since in a spirit of conservatism? Or was it an

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Me. JUSTICE GRANTHAM had before him at the Leeds Assizes a case of a somewhat interesting character wbich illustrates some of the perils of the roads, and it further indicates that it is possible, under certain circumstances, to bring home to local bodies their responsibilities. The facts showed that a motor cyclist, to whose cycle a eide car was attached, was riding through Castleford. Passing down a street therein insufficiently lighted, he encountered a heap of refuse deposited in the road by scavengers. The evidence showed that he was travelling very slowly at the time, but, despite this, severe injury was occasioned to a hand and knee. The jury came to the conclusion that the cyclist had taken all reasonable precautions, and awarded him the substantial sum of £130. This result should be brought to the attention of all local bodies having jurisdiction over the roads. A greal deal of reform has been effected during the last few yeare, but much yet remains to go to securo that highways should be Eo treated to make them suitable mainly and chiefly for traffic of the class most likely to

them. Whether like it or not, the average speed of road users has been augmented of late, and warnings unnecessary years ago under circumstances differing widely from those of to-day can be dispensed with no longer. We have not observed any special attention having been called to the eflec: this increase of average speed should have on the whole policy of local bodies, and on its influence on the question whether they have shown themselves to be negligent. Tbe case, however, sbould remind these bodies that no obstructions should be placed in any road without the same being adequately lighted and guarded, and more especially where tramlines and other impedimenta all tend to make the traffo more congested sod confused.



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Two more cases reported of late in the Prega draw further attention to the petty annoyances to which motorists are exposed. At Peterefield, a small town on the road to Portsmouth, the police have been summoning drivers on the ground that their side lights were a few inches inside the extreme limits of their cars. Nearly all modern vehicles nowadays find it necessary to fix their lamps slightly within the extreme outeide line, and regard has to be paid in practice to the

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