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INSTITUTES OF AMERICAN LAW.
THE INSTITUTES OF AMERICAN Law, by the late Judge BOUVIER, have been before the profession for several years, and the increasing demand for the work attests the general appreciation of its merit
. It has been used by courts, judges, lawyers and laymen, and the result confirms the opinion of its very great value, which Chief Justice Taney expressed upon an examination of some of the proofsheets of the first edition, and which, after the subsequent publication, was, as he says, strengthened by looking further into it.
The arrangement adopted in the Institutes is in some respects novel. The method of teaching law in the form of lectures is in many particulars objectionable, and most of our modern law books, which are made up of transcripts from a lecturer's memoranda, have been required to be almost wholly rewritten in the notes, often exceeding the text in bulk and importance, or at least the generalities of the oral or written discourse have had to be supplemented by those more detailed references, distinctions, and discussions which were incompatible with the loose structure of the text, although requisite to be known by the practitioner. An institutional treatise upon the law as a science should be constructed upon a system of rigid analysis and classification which will be more apt to beget a severely logical habit of mind in the student than the discursive style of lectures. Judge Bouvier was deeply read in the French and the Roman laws, and he has evidently imbibed from those sources a taste for that orderly and accurate development of the subject which characterizes his Institutes.
Another feature of the work is, that it is a REPRESENTATION OF AMERICAN Law, of that general body of Jurisprudence on the basis of which justice is at present administered throughout our country at large. His references are selected from the reports of our own tribunals in different States of the Union; so that the student immediately becomes familiar with our own authorities, and is prepared for immediate action in his profession. He is not set to study the
INSTITUTES OF AMERICAN LAW.
learning of obsolete titles, but becomes a thoroughly American lawyer, rather than an Americanized English lawyer.
The favor with which the work has been accepted by the profession, and its increasing sale, justify the encomiums which its matter and method have received from some of our most distinguished jurists. It may be added, as a circumstance of no small importance to the practitioner, that notwithstanding the amount of legal learning here embodied, it is rendered immediately accessible by an accurate and exhaustive index, so that, in the most hurried moments of inquiry, even during the trial of a cause, one may alight upon any particular passage contained in the work.
“The discussion of remedies both in law and equity is particularly full, and supplies what was wholly or partially omitted by former commentators, and forms an admirable introduction to the large treatises of Chitty, Greenleaf, Story, and Spencer."
In the fourth and fifth books of the Institutes Remedies are treated under the following heads :
Precautions to be adopted before the commencement of an action; Remedies without action ; Courts; Parties to actions; Process and appearance; The declaration; Pleas; The replication and subsequent pleadings; The trial; The nature and object of evidence; Instruments of evidence; Witnesses; Effect of evidence and the manner of giving it; Proceedings before verdict, and verdict; Proceedings after verdict; Proceedings in the nature of appeals; Execution; Account render; Assumpsit; Covenant; Debt and Detinue; Action on the case ; Trover; Replevin; Trespass; Mixed actions; Scire facias.
The nature and principles of equity; Assistant jurisdiction of equity; Peculiar remedies in equity; The general remedies; Peculiar equitable relief; Remedies in particular cases; The exclusive jurisdiction of courts of equity; The parties to a suit in equity; Bills in equity; Proceedings between the filing of the bill and the defence; Defence, disclaimers and demurrers in equity; Pleas in equity; Answers and replications in equity; Incidents to pleadings in general; The evidence in equity; The hearing and decree.
(From the Boston Post.) Bouvier's Institutes is a work of which it can be truly said, if the student can own but one book, by all means let it be this. It is true that this work has not superseded Blackstone's Commentaries, but it is certain it ought to do so, so far as the student is concerned. There is a use for Blackstone, but it should not be used as a first book, but rather the last, for a student's hand.
REFERENCES TO THE CIVIL AND OTHER SYSTEMS OF FOREIGN LAW.
Ignoratis terminis ignoratur et ars.-CO. LITT. 2 &.
FIFTEENTH EDITION, THOROUGHLY REVISED AND GREATLY ENLARGED.