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give of it would be but the abridgement of an abridgement, and we must refer our readers to the book itself. The character of Littelton seems to us to be drawn with much precifion. We shall therefore insert it at length, as a more just and candid specimen of Mr. Reeves's own style and manner, than the quotation of a quotation from an old Year-book, which, as we before observed, has been already extracted, to assist the public in forming a judgment of the present work.

• Littleton was a judge of the common pleas, in the reign of Edward IV. and composed his book of Tenures for the use of his fon, to whom it is addressed. It contains three books; the first upon eftates, the second upon tenures and services (which two tended to explain more at large the principal subject of the old book of tenures), the third discourses of several incidents to tenures and estates, This little treatise has acquired more notice chan any other book in the law; which is to be ascribed partly to the nature of the subject, and partly to the manner in which it is treated, and the great character of the writer when a judge.

* The learning of real property had, in the reign of Edward III. been cultivated with a minute attention : the period which had elapsed since that reign to the time when our author wrote, had produced many additions and modifications of it, till this branch had grown into a very refined fyftem, constituting, in every respect, the most intricate part of our jurisprudence. These later determinations had rendered the old treatises of the law in a great degree obsolete. Bracton, though more full than any of the rest, being more ancient, afforded no light in that fort of questions which were now usually canvassed, and which had originated entirely since his time : still less was to be expected from Fleta, Britton, and the Mirrour, though of a later age. In this state of things, it was an undertaking much to be wished, that some one should explain, in a methodical way, the new learning that had arisen on the subject of tenures and estates. This our author has done, with a felicity which has placed him in a rank above all writers on the Englich Jaw.

• If we enquire what is the excellence which has entitled the writer to so high a character, it will be found to be of a particular kind. It is not a beautiful arrangement of subject; not a remarkably apt division of his matter; not a strict adherence even to his own plan, by preserving a close connection between the matter and title of a chapter ; in all which he is sometimes more defective than writers of inferior note. cellence of Littleton seems to consist in the great depth of his matter, and simplicity of his manner; in a comprehensive way of thinking, and a happy method of explaining; with a certain fignificance and clearness of style, that is always plain yet expressive and fatisfactory,

The ex

• This author usually quotes no authority for what he ad. vances : in this, however, he does not differ much from his cotemporaries, who even in their arguments and opinions deli. vered in court, had not got into that practice of vouching authorities, which has obtained so much fince. Whenever he has a point to handle which is not thoroughly settled, he generally ftates the different opinions on it, and then gives his own reasons for differing or agreeing with either : and where he does not deliver an opinion declaredly his own, the latt is fupposed to be that which he is inclined to adopt. This rational and candid way of treating every thing, added to the known abilities of the author, acquired him such confidence with posterity, that any thing out of Littleton has been taken upon that au. thority alone. Thus, the want of references, which at first might seem a want of authenticity, has in the end administered to the fame of this writer; as opinions, which otherwise might be vouched from an adjudged case, are now totally rested on the words of Littleton.

• The undiminished reputation which this author ftill pofseffes, is owing principally to the choice of his subject. The law of estates and tenures, as understood at the time of Littleton, is at this day the best introduction to the knowledge of real property; and, though great part of this volume is not now law, yet so intimately was the whole of this system con. nected, that what remains of tenures cannot be understood without a knowlege of what is abolished ; and therefore the parts of Littleton which are now obsolete, are studied both with profit and pleasure. We may ftill say what the author pronounced of his work in another respect : “ Though certain things which are moved, and specified in the said book, are not altogether law, yet such things thall make thee more apt and able to understand and apprehend the arguments and reasons of the law."

• Besides this, the law of tenures and estates has always been thought the most natural entrance into the study of the law in general; therefore this small volume became the first book which was put into the hands of the student; and while it was considered by practicers and the courts as a book of the highest authority, it was at the same time the institute to English jurisprudence. Lawyers gave their earliest and latest application to the text of Littleton ; every section and sentence was weigh, ed, and every proposition confidered in all its consequences ; is was translated, commented, and analysed ; and every method contrived to gain a complete knowlege of its contents. Pers haps no book, in any science so confined as the municipal laws of any country must be, has more employed the labours of the learned and industrious. A writer, who was himself one of the greatest ornaments of the law, and whose name never appears greater, than when accompanied with that of our author, furnished the world with a very copious and minute commen,


tary on this book; in which he has carried his attention to the import of every word so far, as to make interesting remarks on his very et cæteras.

The fame of Littleton has not been confined to this island. As the Norman lawyers made Glanville a model upori which to form their couflumier, and give system to their jurisprudence ; so a modern writer of that country has lately made a learned comment on Littleton, as the best help towards illustrating their own customs and laws.'

The reign of Henry VII. is a great constitutional period; he wrested the power from the nobles, which at last fell to the people. But as our author avoids such discussions, the history of the law in his reign is not very interelting. The attention of the king was principally directed to criminal proceedings, and almost all offences were made fineable ; a circumstance which strongly marks the ruling passion of this politic prince -the accumulation of wealth. That very technical part of the law, the doctrine of uses, was refined upon


greater Subtlety, especially as, by a statute of Richard III. they had become connected with the law of entails. The support given by the courts to the action of ejectment, has in the end entirely precluded the use of real actions; which did not merit such neglect. They seem perfectly adapted to this end, and for the decision of the several questions which could arise concerning real property. The process was certainly tedious, and full of useless formalities; but this might easily have been remedied. The method of deciding upon real property is at present utterly unintelligible to all except lawyers, and has given an air of mystery to a profession which is grounded on common sense, and must be supported by it.

We here take leave of a work which, if it had been finished as it was designed, we should not have hesitated to have called a great one. We must express a hope, however, that Mr. Reeves will soon feel the insufficiency of these motives which tempted him to defert his original plan, and complete the History of the Law in a manner which may make us forget that it was ever given to the world unfinished. Not indeed that we wilh, in any degree, to be understood as entertaining an un. favourable opinion of the present publication : on the contrary, however inferior it may be to that which the author promised in his outset both to himself and his readers, it is even as it now appears, a production of considerable importance. More perhaps might have been done (though if we had not been taught to expect, we should probably not have required more); yet this in justice ought not to derogate from the merit of what is performed. The young ftudent, as well as the


more experienced proficient in the law, may reap advant. age from these volumes, where they will find a well-connected recital of all the ancient statutes, and an historical di. gest of all the fundamental do&trines contained in the treatises of our first law-writers, such as Glanville, Bracton, Fleta, Britton, and the Mirrour of Magistrates; authors, whose black-letter pages in barbarous Latin, bad English, and worse French, however venerable they may look, opportunely difplayed upon a table, we believe to be neither so generally nor so attentively studied by modern lawyers as they deserve. The prefent attempt to render them more extensively known, en. titles Mr. Reeves, in our estimation, to the thanks of all who wish well to the advancement of legal science. [Corresp.

Sketch of a Tour into Derbyshire and Yorkshire, including Part of

Buckingham, Warwick, Leicester, Nottingham, Northampton, Bedford, and Hertford-fhires. By William Bray, F. A. S.

870. Second Edition. 6s. in Boards. White, THE firft edition of this Sketch, comprised in a half-crown

pamphlet, has formerly been noticed in our Review *. The work is now so much extended as to form a moderate vo. lume in large octavo. To give a regular detail of the narra. tive, would be to relate the author's progress and observations through the whole of the Tour: and though this might perhaps be no disagreeable task, it is such a one as must be precluded by the neceflity of accommodating the limits of our Review to a variety of other subjects. In performing this Tour the author has proceeded by Buckingham, Banbury, Edge-hill, Warwick, Coventry, Leicester, Derby, Matlock, Buxton, Sheffield, Leeds, Rippon, and Akrig; whence he returned through the wilds of Yorkshire, called Craven, and by Mansfield, Nottingham, Northampton, Woburn, and St Alban's.

For the gratification of such of our readers as are unacquainted with the beauties of Stowe, we shall lay before them our author's account of those gardens, in delineating which he has chiefly followed the description of the late Mr. Whately.

In the front of the house, which stands on the brow of a gentle rise, is a considerable lawn, open to the water, beyond which are two elegant doric pavilions, placed in the boundary of the garden, but not marking it as such, though they correipond to each other; for, ftill further back, on a rising ground without the inclosure, ftands the Corinthian arch, which is seen in the approach.

* Crit. Rev. vol. xlv. p. 159.


• I shall not attempt to describe all the buildings, which are very numerous, but shall mention some of the principal scenes.

On entering the garden, you are conducted to the left by the two Doric pavilions, from whence the magnificent front of the house is full in view. You pass by the fide of the lake (which, with the bason, flows about ten acres) to a temple dedicated to Venus, looking full on the water ; and over a lawn, up to the temple of Bacchus, to which you are led by a winda ing walk. This last building stands under cover of a wood of large trees. The lawn, which is extensive, is bounded by wood on each side, and Nopes down to the water, on the oppofite fide of which is the very elegant temple of Venus, just mentioned, thrown into perspective, by being inclined a little from a front view. Over the tops of the surrounding wood is a view of the distant country, terminated by Brill-hill, near Oxford ; and Quainton-hill, near Aylesbury:

• From hence you cross the lawn by the front of the house, which is nearly in the centre of the gardens, dividing them as it were into two parts. In the latter division, the tower of the parish church, bofomed in trees, the body of it wholly concealed from view, is one of the first things which strikes the eye, and you are uncertain whether it is more than one of the ornamental buildings. Paffing by it you enter the Elysian fields, under a Doric arch, through which are seen, in perspective, a bridge, and a lodge in the form of a castle. The temple of Friend fhip is in fight; and within this fpot are those of Ancient Virtue and of the British Worthies, adorned with busts of various eminent men, and inscriptions, mentioning their particular merits. Here is also a roftral column to the memory of captain Grenville, brother of the late earl, who was killed in that successful engagement with the French fleet in 1747, when Mr. Anson took the whole of the convoy. In the bottom runs a stream, which, with the variety and disposition of the trees disperfed over gentle inequalities of ground, make this a very lively and beautiful scene.

• Close to this is the Alder-grove, a deep recess in the thickeft fade. The water, though really clear, is rendered of a dark blue colour by the over-hanging trees : the alders are of an uncommon size, white with age ; and here are likewise fome large and noble elms. At the end is a grotto, faced with flints and pebbles, in which the late earl sometimes supped. On fuch'occasions this grove was illuminated with a great number of lamps, and his lordship, with a benevolence which did him honour, permitted the neighbourhood to share the pleasure of the evening with him and his company, the park gates being

• The temple of Concord and Victory is a most noble build. ing. In the front are fix Ionic columns fupporting a pediment

thrown open.

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