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AMERICAN L AW.

BY JAMES KENT.

VOLUME 1.

EIGHTH EDITION.

NEW-YORK:

PUBLISHED BY WILLIAM KENT,

AND BOLD BY THE PRINCIPAL LAW BOOKSELLERS THROUGHOUT

THE UNITED STATES.

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MDCCC LIV.

Sopthern District of New-York, ss.
BE IT REMEMBERED, That on the twenty-ofth day of November, A. D. 1826, in the

fifty-first year of the Independence of the United States of America, JAMES KENT, (L. S.) of the said district, has deposited in this office the title of a Book, the right whereof

he claims as author, in the words following, to wit:

“ Commentaries on American Law. By JAMES KENT. Vol. I.” In conformity to the Act of the Congress of the United States, entitled "An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned." And also to an Act, entitled, An Act, supplementary to an Act, entitled, An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned, and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of designing, engraving and etching historical and other prints.

JAMES DILL,
Clerk of the Southern District of New-York.

Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year one thousand eight hundred and thirtytwo, by JAMES KENT, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New-York.

Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year one thousand eight hundred and forty, by JAMES KENT, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southem District of New York.

Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fortyeight, by WILLIAM KENT, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New-York.

Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fiftyone, by WILLIAM KENT, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New-York.

Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year ono thousand eight hundred and ifty. four, by WILLIAM KENT, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New-York.

JOHN W. AMERMAN, Printer, No 60 William-street, N, Y.

ADVERTISEMENT.

The seventh edition of Kent's Commentaries is the first that has been published containing any additions or alterations not made by the Author. As the work has become, in a great degree, a Digest of American Law, of practical use to the lawyer as well as the student, the Editor has endeavoured to collect the principal decisions and statutory enactments that have been made since the appearance of the last edition. In some few instances, he has attempted, in a very limited manner, to illustrate or qualify some of the doctrines of the text.

The Editor is aware that this mode of collecting authorities is incompatible with exact method, and is, indeed, condemned by the Author himself; and it is quite possible that the original notes to the Commentaries, which were made at successive times, without regard to strict order, might be advantageously regulated and compressed. But, on reflection, he has not felt himself authorized to impair, in any degree, the integrity of the Commentaries, and the text and notes are presented in this edition, as they were left by the Author.

The great increase of the work has rendered the Author's index altogether too limited. A new and enlarged index has accordingly been added; and, as a necessary effect of this index, a new numbering of the pages has been adopted. For the convenience of those possessing the previous publications of the work, the original numbers of the pages have been placed in the margins of the volumes.

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It remains only for the Editor to mention, that the present edition has been prepared by him, with the full and equal cooperation of his friend, Dorman Bridgman Eaton, Esq., who has recently become a resident of New-York; and whose learning and talents must hereafter, in their independent exercise, become manifest to the profession.

WILLIAM KENT. NEW-YORK, May, 1861.

TO

WILLIAM JOHNSON, Esq.

DEAR SIR,

In compiling these volumes, (originally intended, and now published, for the benefit of American students,) I have frequently been led to revisit the same ground, and to follow out the same paths, over which I have so often passed with you as a companion to cheer and delight me.

You have reported every opinion which I gave in term time, and thought worth reporting, during the five and twenty years that I was a Judge at Law and in Equity, with the exception of the short interval occupied by Mr. Caines' Reports. During that long period I had the happiness to maintain a free, cordial and instructive intercourse with you; and I feel unwilling now to close my labours as an author, and withdraw myself finally from the public eye, without leaving some memorial of my grateful sense of the value of your friendship, and my reverence for your character.

In inscribing this work to you, I beg leave, sir, at the same time, to add my ardent wishes for your future welfare, and assure you of my constant esteem and regard.

JAMES KENT.

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