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SCOTCH PROVINCIAL COURTS, AND JUDGES' NOTES
IN THE VARIOUS LAW-SUITS ON THE
QUESTION AT ISSUE;
A BRIEF SKETCH OF SOME INCIDENTS CONNECTED
WITH THE DISSEMINATION OF THE MODERN
“Law Chronicle," and "Law Test.”
The world the river is; both you and I,
Isaac Walton's Book.
The first edition of this book was published in 1871. There were only a limited number of copies thrown off. No copies are now to be had, except in the hands of private individuals, and in the respective libraries of the British Museum, of Oxford, of Cambridge, of Dublin, of the Edinburgh University Library, and of the Advocate's Library, Edinburgh; in short, the first edition is out of print, and has been so for ten years.
This second edition has been increased in size by additions to the original printed text, by a preface, appendix of relative documents, and an index.
The interest which the public at large are now taking in piscatory matters is every day becoming self apparent. We have had an International Fishery Exhibition, held at Edinburgh, from the 12th to the 30th April, 1882, at which the fishery products of the United Kingdom, as well as of some foreign nations, were exhibited; and on the 1st of May, 1883, there was opened in London a more comprehensive International Fishery Exhibition, under the patronage of the Queen, whereat every foreign nation was represented, with relative fishery articles, combined with specimens of the fish found and bred in their respective dominions.
The late editor of Notes and Queries (W.J. Thoms, Esq., F.R.S., and one of the librarians of the House of Lords), in the year 1869, vol. 3, p. 524 of that periodical, has a
passage which it may not be out of place here to quote : “ It was observed by a profound scholar, who was at the same time one of the shrewdest men I ever knew, that there was hardly any book so worthless, but in it you could find something you were glad to know."
The topics in this book are of rather a miscellaneous description, and on this account it is hoped they will not share the fate of the Scotchman's “ thorough-paced doctrine ” which went “ in at ae lug and oot at the ither."
Law is necessarily mixed up in it because fishes and their particular element are ruled, now-a-days, or, at least, attempted to be governed, by Acts of Parliament.
We are too much enamoured by the constant announcements of the introduced simplicity of legal science, and that now we are not plagued by the gibberish of " special general imparlance “special testatum capias," “ special original," " testatum pone,” protestando," “ de bene esse,” &c., &c. Lord Ashburton once remarked on the profession of the law “ It is generally ridiculed as being dry and uninteresting ; but a mind anxious for the discovery of truth and information will be amply gratified for the toil in investigating the origin and progress of a jurisprudence which has the good of the people for its basis, and the accumulated wisdom and experience of ages for its improvement.” And the opinion of the Lord Chancellor of Ireland, delivered in an address at the Social Science Meeting, in Liverpool, some years ago, is fully as important. His Lordship observed, “Improved procedure, amended laws, much to be valued though they be, yet, if we do not secure the moral elevation, the learned capacity and