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forefront of the article, is of little importance in theory, none in practice. The article confuses the defences of insanity and drunkenness (a confusion prohibited in Beard's Case  A. C. 479), and it contains no reference to that case at all! It is the policy of the book to quote either statute or leading case as authority for every article, and Rex v. Meade and the cases there cited are referred to in a footnote, but Beard's Case, which discussed and explained Rex v. Meade, is not mentioned. Undoubtedly he is a bold man who boasts that he understands Beard's Case-it is even said that the late distinguished Judge who tried the case in the first instance expressed himself as unable to follow the decision of the House of Lords but that case remains the leading authority upon this topic. A. S. D.
The Criminal Justice Act, 1925, with explanatory notes. By ALBERT LIECK and A. C. L. MORRISON. London: Stevens & Sons, Lim. 1926. 8vo. xxxi and 136 pp. (6s. net.) The Criminal Justice Act, 1925, with notes. By R. E. OTTER and G. B. MCCLURE. London: The Solicitors' Law Stationery Society, Lim. 1926. 8vo. xx and 152 pp. (10s. net.)
Criminal Procedure. An outline of the criminal process in this country. By GORDON E. TOUCHE and FREDERIC E. RUEGG. London: Stevens & Sons, Lim. 1926. 8vo. xv and 123 pp. (6s. net.)
THE new Criminal Justice Act, short as it is, and though it deals for the most part with matters only of procedure calling for but few explanatory notes and scarcely any quotation of authorities, has nevertheless produced a small crop of new criminal law books. The first book on our list, the authors of which are the chief clerks of Marlborough Street and Lambeth Police Courts, will be found to be a very workmanlike, if a somewhat elaborate, edition. The authors have brought great experience to the preparation of the book, and they have also obtained an adequate summary of the Act by the Director of Public Prosecutions, who presided over one of the committees which recommended alterations in the criminal law now embodied in this Act. The book also contains a short but useful history of these committees, exhaustive footnotes to the sections and an excellent appendix setting out a list of the indictable offences which are now triable summarily.
On the other hand the second book on our list is the work of a Judge of the High Court of Rangoon and a barrister-at-law. The notes to the sections are shorter and more concise and the book might well have obtained the merit of brevity as against Lieck and Morrison's work, did it not occupy a full third of its compass in giving outlines of the nature of the offences (specified in the First and Second Schedules to the Act) which are by this Act made triable by quarter sessions and petty sessions respectively. On the other hand at least one of the few difficulties of construction that may arise upon this Act is not dealt with. Section 47 abolishes the presumption (where it existed) of the coercion of a wife by her husband, but provides that upon any charge other than one of treason or murder it
shall be a good defence to prove that the offence was committed in the presence of and under the coercion of the husband.' Prima facie we must suppose that coercion' here has the meaning that it bears elsewhere in the criminal law. But elsewhere the defence of coercion is applicable even to a case of treason (Rex v. McGrowther, Foster 13), nor is it possible to say that the accused upon a charge of treason or any other charge must show that the offence charged was committed in the presence of' the person by whom he alleges he was coerced. Is it to be supposed, therefore, that the defence of coercion now open to a wife is more limited in extent than that open to others? Or must we conclude that the coercion in the wife's case consists of something less than a threat to life or a use of physical force, and, if so, what? Previous cases dealing with coercion by a husband are of no assistance, for they only determine when the presumption applied. The explanation of this pretty puzzle apparently is that while Mr. Justice Avory's Committee recommended that the coercion of the husband as a defence to the wife should be abolished, leaving her free to establish any other defence,' Parliament in its wisdom has thought fit to abolish the presumption but to leave open the defence. Lieck and Morrison, who are not strong in legal argument, use (at p. 91) some loose language concerning the probable effect of public opinion in rather narrowly limiting the operation of this doctrine, which (they say) is implicit in the common law-whatever all this may mean-and Otter and McClure's book is content merely to repeat the words of the section in the note thereto. The authors of Criminal Procedure' give an outline of that procedure including the alterations made by the Criminal Justice Act. It is not to be supposed that the practising barrister (who invariably has his Archbold) will be able to use an 'outline' of criminal procedure, or that the student (who invariably has his Kenny) will desire a criminal law book dealing only with procedure. Apart, however, from a little looseness of language and construction (inherent in a book that sets out only to portray a view' of this procedure) it deals adequately with the subject and might well be used (being conveniently small) by the young solicitor-advocate or articled clerk.
A. S. D.
The New Property Acts. Series of Lectures with Questions and Answers. By Sir BENJAMIN L. CHERRY, LL.B. Reprinted from The Solicitors' Journal,' and published by arrangement with the Law Society. London: The Solicitors' Law Stationery Society, Lim. xi and 186 pp. (6s.)
The Law of Property Acts, 1925. Series of Lectures. By A. F. TOPHAM, K.C. Reprinted from 'The Solicitors' Journal.' London: The Solicitors' Law Stationery Society, Lim. vii and 157 pp. (68.)
Lectures on the Practice of Conveyancing under the 1925 Acts. By RONALD R. FORMOY, M.A., LL.M. London: Shaw & Sons, Lim. vii and 72 pp. (3s. 6d.)
THESE three little books are all attempts by men of great learning and ability to explain the principles and, if possible, to elucidate the difficulties of the vast mass of recent property legislation. They are in
the form of Lectures delivered respectively before the Law Society in London, the Solicitors' Managing Clerks' Association, and the Cornwall and Plymouth Law Societies.
The difficulty of lecturing on so technical and intricate a subject is great, but in all three cases it was surmounted with success and the Lectures, as such, are models of their kind. It is not only the function of such Lectures to expound; they are no less useful as a mere aid in the distasteful task of digesting a rather indigestible statutory banquet. But their value when reduced into the form of books is a little more questionable. There is something about the mere form of a book, however small a one it is, which seems to give a promise of thoroughness and finish which in the nature of things cannot always be fulfilled.
Sir Benjamin Cherry's book, which is prefaced by an Introduction by Viscount Haldane upon the genesis of the Acts, is clear in its arrangement and fortunate in its Index. Its most distinguishing feature, however, is the series of questions put by members of the audience on points raised by the Lectures, with Sir Benjamin Cherry's answers to them. These form an admirable commentary on the whole and add a sort of Socratic freshness to the narrative. At the same time, the reader cannot help feeling a certain annoyance with the author's rather magisterial Yea and Nea. What he looks for is not mere bald opinion but reasons and authorities. Moreover, accuracy itself has sometimes been sacrificed in the interests of brevity, as where (p. 169) the author says 'during a minority or the subsistence of a life interest representation will not be granted to less than two individuals'; what the author meant, perhaps, was 'administration' (Judicature (Consolidation) Act, 1925, s. 160, sub-s. 1 -sub-s. 2 applying to executors also but being merely permissive), and even to such an amended statement there may be exceptions: Re Herbert  P. 109. It would be unreasonable to complain of such blemishes occurring under the hurried conditions of a Lecture, but a book, however modest its claims, necessarily falls to be judged by stricter standards.
Mr. Topham does not lose sight of the fact that he is lecturing to men who will have to face not only the broad principles but the actual working. details of the new legislation. The questions constantly in his mind and brought out in his Lectures are questions concerning the practical steps to be taken in the normal course of routine work. This definite object and the clear view of it preserved throughout the Lectures adds life and reality to the book. Mr. Topham is not concerned (as Sir Benjamin Cherry sometimes is) to defend the new legislation from criticism. Where there is a pitfall he neither denies its existence nor insists that, if anyone falls into it, it will be his own fault; he merely warns his readers to be wary. On the other hand, the reader is apt to be a little irritated by colloquialisms and somewhat loose expressions and in one or two places the style, if not actually obscure, is rather involved. Comparisons are odious but sometimes useful; and of the three introductions to the new legislation now under review, Mr. Topham's is the one which we prefer.
It is clear,
Mr. Formoy's book is less ambitious than the other two. concise and businesslike. Here are practically no colloquialisms and, where Mr. Topham allows himself quite a number of mild jokes (for we observe that (laughter)' is interpolated here and there) we could discover but one place where Mr. Formoy has allowed his Themis, as it were, to
relax a corner of her mouth. In short, the book reads (as in our view is right and proper) as though it were an introductory chapter in a large volume which is to elaborate in 1600 pages what the first chapter outlines in 60.
There can be no doubt but that all three books, though useful in their own way to the general reader, will be of even greater value as reminders and records to those who attended the spoken Lectures. What one has heard with one's ears is apt to be more vivid than what one reads in books; and here, instead of untidy and probably illegible notes, the listeners have the whole substance of the Lectures spread out before them fair and orderly and neat.
In conclusion, it is only right to remind prospective readers that even in the few months which have elapsed since the publication of these books, the insatiable hand of the legislator has brushed away the first bloom of their fresh up-to-date-ness. This is a more serious misfortune to books of this kind than to their more solid cousins the big treatises.
R. J. F. B
The Jurisprudence of Holland. By HUGO GROTIUS. The text translated with brief notes and a commentary by R. W. LEE, D.C.L., Rhodes Professor of Roman-Dutch Law, Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. Vol. I: Text, Translation and Notes. Oxford: At the Clarendon Press. 1926. 8vo. XXV and 531 pp. (14s. net.)
IN preparing this edition of the Inleiding of Grotius, Professor Lee has added greatly to the debt already owing to him by all students of Roman-Dutch Law by the publication of his excellent text-book on the subject. It supplies a pressing need and will be welcomed not only by students and teachers of law but by many practitioners in South Africa and Ceylon. Mr. Herbert's translation, published in 1845, has long passed into the category of rare books, and that of Sir Andreas Maasdorp, which rapidly passed through three editions, has been for some years out of print. At least, so we have been made to understand by the London publishers.
A special feature of the present edition is that the text is printed with the translation on the page opposite, so that, as Professor Lee says in his preface, any reader who finds the translation unsatisfactory may easily appeal to the Dutch text.' We have tested the translation in various parts but have not yet found ground for appeal. The text followed is that of the second authentic edition, published in 1631, with some emendations which are duly pointed out in the Notes.
It is hardly necessary to emphasize the importance of this work of Grotius in connexion with the study of Roman-Dutch Law. It occupies much the same position in that system that Blackstone's Commentaries occupy in English law. The present work will undoubtedly obtain recognition as an essential adjunct to Professor Lee's Introduction to Roman-Dutch Law. We may express a hope that the publication of the Commentary, which is to form the matter of Volume II, will not be long delayed.
D. T. O.
Mélanges de Droit Romain dédiés à Georges Cornil. In two Volumes. Vanderpoorten & Co., rue de la Cuiller, 18, Gand; Soc. An. Recueil Sirey, 22 rue Soufflot, Paris 5e. 1926.
THIS is a composite work, consisting of a large number of dissertations on subjects connected with Roman Law, written as a tribute of esteem and dedicated to Professor Cornil on the occasion of the completion of thirty years' tenure of the chair of Roman Law at Brussels, in which he has accomplished work of so much distinction. The contributors include most of the leading exponents of the subject in England and on the Continent, outside of Germany, and the material covers a very wide field. It is a monument of scholarship. England is represented by contributions from Professor Buckland of Cambridge and Professor de Zulueta of Oxford. Professor Buckland contributes a characteristic paper on the contract Aestimatum, examining successively the few texts which are supposed to deal with it. He shows that some of the difficulties on the subject have arisen by assuming that it is referred to in some texts which have nothing to do with it and by treating the institution as involved in the history of the Innominate Contracts, whereas it seems to have had a distinct and much earlier evolution, and to be in strictness not an innominate contract at all.' He points out that the formula in the actio de æstimato may well have formed the model on which actions præscriptis verbis were subsequently developed but that in its origin it was specific and that the generic formulæ were probably of much later introduction. Professor de Zulueta's essay on William of Drogheda will be read with great interest as containing much matter supplementary to the late Professor Maitland's essay 'William of Drogheda and the Universal Ordinary,' included in 'Canon Law in the Church of England.' In form Professor de Zulueta's paper is a review of the edition of Drogheda's Summa, published in 1914, by Professor Wahrmund of Prague. But it contains a valuable critical summary of the contents of the Summa and supplies a great deal of new and useful information concerning the author.
It is only possible to indicate in the briefest manner the wealth of material contained in these volumes. The veteran Professor Appleton of Lyons contributes a suggestive essay entitled 'Notre enseignement du Droit Romain: ses ennemis et ses défaults.' Professor Riccobono of Palermo presents four essays (1) Fasi e Fattori Dell Evoluzione del Diritto Romano,' (2) 'L'Arbitrium Boni Viri nei Fedecommessi,' (3) Legati e Fedecommessi-Verba e Voluntas,' (4) 'Influsso della Cognito extra ordinem sul Ius Civile.' Professor Peguero of Saragossa supplies a commentary on the Lex Iulia Municipalis, and Professor Taubenschlag of Cracow a most interesting essay on local law in imperial constitutions prior to Diocletian. The printed matter extends to 1253 pages, and altogether there are forty-two contributors, all civilians of wide and established reputation.
D. T. O.