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his own work has produced a nearer approximation to the truth than has yet been offered. In the present volumes, which may be considered as an introduction to the entire work, much of Mr. Foss's attention has been employed on the minute investigation of truth, and in the humble industry of correcting former errors, of tracing the progress of legal institutions, of separating what had been confused by similarity of circumstance, and clearing up what had been made obscure by changes of custom and long intervals of time; and so successfully has his industry been rewarded, that he says, "It will perhaps excite some wonder, that of the five hundred and eighty judges, regular and itinerant, comprehended in these two volumes, there are so few of whom I have not been able to collect something beyond the mere facts that they held the one or the other position." Lord Campbell in one part of the memoirs boasts of "the Cancellarian mummies which he has dug up and exhibited to the public;" but Mr. Foss may justly boast of a higher claim to praise, in having given to the persons whom he has drawn from the shades of a long and all but hopeless obscurity, the truth of an historical interest, and the animation of a real existence. His book is not a collection either of skeletons or mummies, but an account of real persons, whose names alone were previously known, but to whom he has bestowed the lineaments of individual character, and the distinguishing features both of the body and the mind.
It would be beyond the scope of our purpose to attempt to point out the variety of information on subjects connected with the history or practice of the law which is to be found in these pages, and which serves to enliven the dryness of detail, by reference to causes and principles which led to the original formation of institutions, or to the changes which they have subsequently undergone; and we are equally unwilling to injure by imperfect abridgement many points here discussed with antiquarian diligence and professional knowledge and zeal; but we may remark as we proceed,
Vol. i. p. 2. The discussion on the introduction of "law terms," which is traced to an institution of the Romans;
and p. 6 and 7, as to their number, and p. 9 as to the modern signification of the word.
P. 51. On the office of Chief Justice (Justiciary).
P. 61. The Life of Flambard Bishop of Durham.
P. 73. On the Establishment of the Court of Exchequer.
P. 91. On the distinction made between the different Courts of King's Bench and Common Pleas.
P. 123. On the Life of Milo de Gloucester, Earl of Hereford, in the reign of Stephen.
P. 153. The Life of Roger Bishop of Salisbury, 1135. We point out these early biographies as interesting, from the portraits being drawn with a truth and distinctness scarcely to be expected at so remote and obscure a period.
P. 169. On the office of Chief Justiciary being separated from those of Treasurer and Prime Minister to the King (reign Henry the Second).
P. 190. Robert de Beaumont, Earl of Leicester. In his Life (1154) of this Earl we are told, "Throughout the King's contest with Becket, he aided his royal master in maintaining the rights of the State against the encroachments of the clergy. His prudence was so great and his piety so notorious, that even the violent Archbishop did not venture to include him in the sentence of excommunication which he pronounced against several of the King's counsellors; although he had been one of the principal actors, and had joined in prevailing on Becket to sign the Constitutions of Clarendon."
P. 192. The Life of Thomas Becket, notwithstanding Mr. Foss's anticipation of the difficulty of the subject, and of the impossibility of pleasing those who consider it from different points of view, is written with temperance and judgment, and will repay the perusal if only for the historical information it imparts on several points; among which will be found the "advanced position which the possessor of the Great Seal eventually ob tained at the councils of the kingdom from the example of Becket, and the "new element introduced into national warfare by the employment of mercenaries."
P. 275. We meet with a short but pleasing biography of our old friend Walter Mape, or Mapes, the facetious Archdeacon of Oxford; and in which, we are not quite pleased in being toldon the authority of Mr. Wright-that the Drinking Song, which is ascribed to him, commencing
Meuin est propositum in tabernâ mori,
is a compilation of a much later period, from some lines in the Confessio Goliæ, containing a mock confession of his three vices, of which one was his love of wine.
P. 363. In the Life of Richard Fitz-Nigel, Bishop of London, Mr. Foss informs us of a curious mistake made by some one whose name he kindly omits. "One of the monks of Winchester, in describing the death of this prelate, having designated his office of Treasurer by the word Apotecarius (a Theca), an author has been led to commit the somewhat absurd blunder
of making him the King's medical adriser!" Was this the same man who transposed "Lincoln's Inn" and "Gray's Inn" into two Norman Knights? See Valpy's Translation of parts of Hentzneri Itinerarium, 4to. Reading.
P. 389. Life of William de Longchamp (Richard the First), Bishop of Ely. He seemed the Wolsey of an earlier time. He was the first, we are told, who, on hearing of the detention of King Richard, discovered his prison, and assisted in procuring his liberty. He also surrounded the Tower of London with a strong wall, and attempted to encircle it with the waters
of the Thames.
P. 400. Life of William Marischall, Earl of Pembroke (1189). This person held a prominent place in history; flourished in four reigns, during three of which he was high in the royal confidence, and acted with unshaken loyalty." He was present at the great day of Runnymede when Magna Charta was signed. He was buried in the church of the New Temple, in London, with these lines for his epitaph.
Sum, quem Saturnum sibi sensit Hibernia;
Arderne. "He endowed the priory of Butley, in Sussex, which was founded by Ranulph de Glanville, with half the town of Baudesey, part of the inheritance which he had acquired through that great justiciary," &c. There is here a mistake in the name of the county. The priory of Butley and the town of Baudesey are both in Suffolk and not in Sussex.
P. 136. See the distinction between "Cancellarius" (Chancellor) and Custos Sigilli (Keeper of the Great Seal) laid down by Mr. Foss with great clearness and precision. Previous to the reign of Henry the Third it appears that there was a "Vice-Cancellarius," who authenticated the charters
instead of the chancellor, both in his absence and presence, apparently being merely principal clerk of the court, acting officially; but in Henry the the constitution of the office. Third's time a change took place in seal was held by persons who were chancellors, but who performed all the not chancellors, nor the deputies to
duties attached to the office without
bearing the title, &c. Mr. Foss says,
"The first instance I have discovered of the use of the title of Chancellor
of England' occurs in this reign." Vide p. 148.
P. 160 to p. 185. This whole chapter on the "Division of the Courts," a subject we believe, among the antiquaries of law, of discussion and difficulty, has been discussed by Mr. Foss with much learned and careful_investigation; and we may observe that, treated with sound learning, clear exposition, and calm and temperate judgment, there are few professional subjects that may not be made interesting to the general reader.
P. 236. We meet with the following the manner in which the shorter noentry, which we copy as a specimen of tices, containing matters of no particular interest or importance, are given by the author, condensing the necessary information in a short compass:
"Bertram, Roger, Just. Itin. 1225.There were two noble families of this name in Northumberland; one Bertram of Mitford, and the other Bertram of Bothall, and the christian name Roger was common to both. The subject of this notice belonged to the former family Vol. ii. p. 30. Ralph de Arden or (of Mitford), and was the son of William
Anglia; Mercurium Normannia: Gallia Mar
de Bertram and Alice de Umfraville his wife. His father died about 1 John, for in that year the guardianship of Roger was granted to William Brewer, but was afterwards transferred to Peter de Brus, who fined 1,300 marks for the same. Towards the end of the reign, being found in the ranks of the insurgent Barons, his lands and castle of Mitford were given into the custody of Philip de Ulecet, who seems to have resisted the royal order for their restoration when Roger returned to his obedience on the accession of Henry the Third. He was obliged, however, to submit, and Roger was reinstated on a
fine of 100%. From this time he acted the part of a loyal subject, and was frequently employed as a justice itinerant, viz. in 9 Henry III. in Northumberland, in 10 and 11 Henry III. in Cumberland, and in 18 Henry III. in both these counties and in Lancashire. He died before May 24, 1242, 26 Henry III. on which day his lands were delivered into the custody of Walter de Crupping on behalf of his son Roger, who did homage for them on June 28, 1246, on attaining his majority. In the reign of Edward II. the barony terminated by the failure of male issue."
We add to this account that the christian name "Roger" has long ceased in this ancient family, but the name of "Bertram" still remains among the males, and that of "Bertha among the females. Bertram was the name of the Norman follower of William the First who married the heiress of Mitford castle.
P. 272. "Hubert de Burgh." We are told "that this distinguished man traced his ancestry as high as the Emperor Charlemagne." We may add, that this is the period in which the genealogies of modern times may be said to commence. This, as given in Mr. Foss's pages, is an important and interesting biography.
P. 370. In the life of "Roger Harcourt" we are informed that the mode of remunerating judges both in England and Ireland (temp. Hen. III.) seems to have been by appropriating to them certain lands during the king's pleasure. The value seemed to amount to 201. or 251. In the time of James the First the allowance of the judges was very low, and many were poor. At the present day they appear to us to be extravagantly high, for we have known a chief justice retire with nearly 300,000l., and a lord chancellor with but a little short of a million! while, to support this "grandeur of the law,"
the suitor, for whose assistance the law is administered, is ruined. We confess that we were much struck in reading Lord Campbell's Lives of the Chancellors with the "cura peculi' which affected all who imbibed the air of the courts of Westminster; and the impression which that work left on our minds was not unfavourable to the talents, or industry, or integrity of the author, but certainly the portraits which he gives were seen by us as if through a cold impenetrable atmosphere, and the "lex naturæ " was the only law which these learned men
seemed neither to consider or understand.
But we must now take leave of Mr. Foss, with the grateful recollections which have arisen from his having presented to us a work in which a subject of great historical importance is treated with the care, diligence, and learning it deserves; in which he has brought to light many points previously unknown, corrected many errors of those who had gone before him in the same inquiries, and has shewn to the profession such ample knowledge of his subject as to conduct it successfully through all the intricacies of a difficult investigation, and such taste and judgment as will enable him to quit, when occasion requires, the dry details of a professional inquiry, and to impart to his work as he proceeds the grace and dignity of a philososophical history.
The Life of Edward the Sixth. By the Rev. R. W. Dibdin, M.A. 18mo. pp. 148.
THIS interesting memoir of one of our most beloved princes is compiled from his own journal, his letters preserved in the British Museum, and other authentic sources. The genuineness of the letters is justly inferred by Mr. Dibdin from their juvenility; for their Latin, he argues, has not been corrected by tutors, and, although clever for a child in his ninth year, it is far from being correct. Indeed, the princely writer modestly says to Cranmer, "I beseech you to excuse my Latinity, which is barbarism itself compared with your most superior excellence." (p. 25.) The memoir also contains extracts from Edward's little treatise against the primacy of the Pope, which he finished in 1549, and
the original of which still exists in French, with his preceptor's corrections. Some passages are given from his "Discourse about the Reformation of Abuses," of which Mr. Turner remarks in his "Modern History of England," contrasting it with Latimer's invectives against the times, that he shows "a spirit more enlightened than his worthy bishop's," (vol. iii. p. 269,) and which will inform the reader on the civil history of the age. In chapter vi. the character of King Edward is inserted at length, from the treatise "De Rerum Varietate" of Cardan, who had an interview with him on his return from Scotland; and this passage becomes still more important from a circumstance which seems to have eluded Mr. Dibdin's researches. In the Index Prohibitorius issued by Clement VIII. in 1596, which is generally designated as "Appendix Indicis Tridentini," several of Cardan's works, including the "De Rerum Varietate," are forbidden, "nisi corrigantur." Among these corrections the omission of the passage relating to King Edward was certainly intended. For in the Romish Index Expurgatorius of 1607 (the only one which has issued direct from Rome), at p. 485, at a reference to King Edward, Brasichellen the framer adds, "Qui fuit hæreticus, de id eradendum nomen ejus cum laude." And, as if to make all sure, the general index to Cardan's book has been examined, and the paragraph "Eduardi sexti Regis Anglorum laus directed to be expunged. Such an act may be termed, in the language of the late Mr. O'Connell, a refusal of historical justice. Yet so cautious does Cardan seem to have been, that he avoids the subject of religion, and thus makes this jealousy more pitiable, for it must have been lynx-eyed indeed to have seen danger in the passage, which pronounces young Edward free from his father's defects, as his "mind was cultivated by the study of philosophy." (p. 133.) To secure the object of this suppression it ought to have been extended to many a writer; for, as Fuller says, "No pen passeth him by without praising him, though none praiseth him to his full deserts. Yea Sanders himself,.. though jeering him for his want of age, which was God's pleasure and not King Edward's fault,
and mocking him for his religion, the other's highest honour, alloweth him in other respects large commendations." (Church Hist. b. vii. s. 1.) On the
subject of Joan Bocher's execution and Edward's reluctance to sign the death warrant, Mr. Dibdin adheres to Foxe's original narrative, and differs from Mr. Bruce, who, in his preface to Hutchinson (Parker Society's edition, p. v.), considers that the king could not constitutionally sign it. He would however only have been warranted in omitting the popular story, in case he agreed with Mr. Bruce; though, as the point is controverted, perhaps it might best have been given in an appendix.
But we must draw to a close. Mr. Dibdin has obliged us with a memoir at once concise and copious, pleasing and instructive; attractive to youth in general, and, as a piece of regal biography, not unworthy of the notice of royalty, in case it should find its way into the palace.
Charter House,-its Foundation and History; with a brief Memoir of the Founder, Thomas Sutton, Esq. THE princely Sutton, and his noble endowment, Charter House, have never wanted chroniclers and memorialists. The laborious industry of Herne, and the pious gratitude of Bearcroft, left, however, little for the future historian and biographer to glean; and hence all subsequent writers (Malcolm excepted) have done little more than compile readable and entertaining volumes. Two of these, Mr. Radclyffe's Memorials, and Mr. Roper's Chronicles, we lately noticed in this Magazine (April 1847); and here again we have a compilation; but it accomplishes its object-affording in a single volume, and at a moderate cost, such authentic particulars regarding Charter House, as a charitable institution and public school, as may be found of general interest. This is the merit of the book, and it aspires to nothing more; all it contains of novelty relates to the present condition of the school. A list of orators and medallists under the late and present schoolmasters, Dr. Russell and Dr. Saunders, is given, proving, we think, satisfactorily, that in this department the
intentions of the founder are carried
out, and that the school maintains its
reputation at both the universities, and sustains its character also at Haileybury and Addiscombe. Our only fear is that, under the general management of aristocratic governors and the more especial control of ecclesiastics, the school is in some danger of absorbing a greater proportion of the general foundation than was contemplated by its benevolent founder. His sympathy we think rather lay in the other direction, the comforts of the old, and to this part of the noble endowment we will address our concluding observations.
Of all the modern books to which we have alluded, it may be remarked that the information they convey refers principally to the early stages of the institution; nothing can be more meagre and unsatisfactory, not to say contradictory and obscure, than their references to its present state and condition. The governors, authorised to make what rules they please, so that they are not contrary to the spirit of the founder's intention, seem every way indisposed to enlighten public curiosity on this subject. Herne tells but little, and much of that little is now we presume obsolete. Bearcroft, writing a century later, shrinks from the disclosure of the secrets at his disposal. "I soon discovered (he says) there were many rules and orders about which I ought to consult your lordships, and to receive your particular directions before I published the collection in print." It is for want of correct information that so much inconsistency appears to exist. Orders say one thing; practice another. An order says that the " ter" shall be an unmarried man we find the present master has a large family. Another order says that he shall accept of no perferment whereby he may be drawn from his residence, care, and charge of the hospital. We find a notorious and published fact, that in addition to his charge as master of Charter House, the present master holds the incongruous preferments of archdeacon of London, canon residentiary of St. Paul's, vicar of St. Giles' Cripplegate, and another office of minor consideration. All these, for aught we know, may be compatible with his care and charge of the hospital," and may be defensible on some grounds not obvious to common ap
prehensions, but they seem to demand explanation. We pointed out this discrepancy in our notice of Mr. Roper's book, and also another equally contradictory respecting the registrar and receiver; so it is with reference to the exercise of their patronage by the governors. The letters patent establish "a free school for the instruction, teaching, maintenance, and education of poor children or scholars ;" and in the first assembly of the governors they adopted the following regulation. "No children shall be placed there (the school) whose parents have any estate in lands to leave unto them, but only the children of poor men that want means to bring them up." We refer to the list of boys on the foundation published by Mr. Roper, and find there internal evidence that this rule must
have been set aside. One fact will be sufficient. A son of a baronet and the nephew of Sir Robert Peel was the last orator, a privilege which falls annually to the senior gown boy. With respect to the pensioners, by whatever name designated, whether "poor brothers or "aged gentlemen," the same uncertainty prevails. The letters patent speak of a hospital house, or place of abiding for the finding, sustentation, and relief of poor, aged, maimed, needy, or impotent people. The governors, anno 1613, in the exercise of their authority thus interpreted the founder's intention. They were required to be
"Such poor persons as can bring good testimony to their good behaviour and soundness in religion, and such as have been servants to the King's Majesty, either decrepid or old captains, either at sea or land; soldiers, maimed or impotent; decayed merchants; men fallen into decay through shipwreck, casualty of fire, or such evil accident."
This regulation not being though sufficiently explicit, in 1627 the go vernors passed another, which was thought too strict and inconsistent with the general terms of the letters patent. The author of the volume before us gives the following as the present understanding of the governors as respects the qualifications of candidates for admission into the hospital:
"Although it may be difficult to define with exactness what shall be the precise qualifications of candidates, so various are the conditions of society, those who are