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Entered according to the act of congress, in the year 1837, by JOHN I. KAY, in the clerk's office of the district court of the United States in and for the eastern district of Pennsylvania.
HON. JOSEPH HOPKINSON.
I should do great injustice to my feelings, in submitting this volume to the profession, without testifying to them my sense of obligation to you, who have contributed so much to make its contents worthy of their approbation, not only by the opinions delivered by yourself, but in others, in which it has been left to me to give the result of our mutual labour and concurring judgment.
When we became associated in our judicial duties, we had an arduous task before us, the high character of the bar of the Circuit Court, and the nature of the causes depending therein, were in themselves just cause for apprehension; but there was still greater reason to be appalled, when we considered the reputation which that court had acquired and sustained for thirty years, under the administration of that eminent and most beloved judge who preceded me. The highest call was made on you, to bring into active requisition all the powers of your acute, discriminating mind, your cogent reasoning and sound judgment, as well as the large fund of legal information, acquired during a long and active course of professional experience, in the developement and application of the great principle of federal and state jurisprudence. If a more imperious call could be made on any one, it was on me to exert every faculty in a way more appropriate to your junior in years and practice; by a patient and laborious examination of the adjudged cases, and the analogies of the law, to so apply the test of precedents to principles, that while we followed the former, the latter should not be violated.
If this volume does not suffice to show that we have obeyed these calls by the execution of every talent at our command, and the just expectations of the public have been disappointed, we must submit to their opinion; having done our best, we are spared the pain of self reproach. But if we have in some degree so adjudicated the cases before us, as to have given reasonable satisfaction, or measurably preserved the character of the court, it has been by a singleness of object, its steady pursuit, and a happy union of opinion in our several judgment on the points adjudged, as well as in the illustrations and analogies on which our decisions were founded.
It has been to me a subject of pride and pleasure, that the cases in which we have been unable to agree in opinion, are fewer in number than the years of our judicial association; that when they have occurred it has been a subject of mutual regret, and each has been desirous of yielding to the other. When we were colleagues in another department of the government, we came in collision with less regret, owing perhaps to one stimulus, which neither of us now feel, or suffer to have any influence on our minds. The pride of victory is a strong incentive in political debate, in which none can engage without feeling its impulse; but however it may have operated on us during a discussion, it ended with it, and we always parted with the same mutual sentiment as we have since done after a judicial conference, when each felt compelled to adhere to his opinion, more diffidence of himself, and respect for the other.
While these are the relations between us, others will appreciate the reasons why I dedicate this book to you.
Philadelphia, December 26, 1836.
Andr.-Andrews's Reports. Anst.-Anstruther's Reports. Atk.-Atkyns's Reports.
B. & A.-Barne wall & Alderson's Rep.
Camp.-Campbell's Nisi Prius Reports.
Ch. C. L.-Chitty's Criminal Law.
C. & P.-Carrington & Paine's Reports. Ch.-Chancellor.
C. P. or C. B.-Common Pleas.
Co. or C.-Coke's Reports.
Co. Lit. or L.-Coke on Littleton.
Cond. Ch.-Condensed Chancery Rep. Cond. Ecc.-Condensed Ecclesiast. Rep. Cond. Ex.-Condensed Exchequer Rep.
D. C. D.-Comyn's Digest by Day.
Dall. L.-Dallas's Laws of Pennsylvania.
E. P. C.-East's Pleas of the Crown.
E. C. A. or Eq. C. Ab.-Equity Cases
F. N. B.-Fitzherbert's Natura Brevium.
Gal.-Gallison's Reports. Gilb. R.-Gilbert's Reports.
Harr. Pr.-Harrison's Chancery Practice.
H. & M-Henning & Munford.
H. Bl.-Henry Blackstone's Reports.
C. L.-Common Law Rep. by Serg., &c. Halst.-Halstead's New Jersey Reports.
Coop.-Cooper's Equity Reports.
H. P. C.-Hale's Pleas of he Crown
J. & W.-Jacob & Walker's Reports
Nels.-Nelson, or Fourth Chancery Rep. Vern.-Vernon's Reports.
Pr. Reg.-Practical Register in Chancery.
Wash.-Washington's Circuit Court Rep. Wash. Va.-Washington's Virginia Circuit Court Reports.
W. Bl.-William Blackstone's Reports.