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is new.

was printed in smaller type in the former edition. The editor has especially endeavoured to condense his statement of statute law, a peculiarly difficult and dangerous task. It may be mentioned in particular, that the whole of the introductory chapter

For part of the substance of it, the editor is indebted to the learning contained in Professor AMES's articles on the Disseisin of Chattels in the Harvard Law Review; he also owes much to discussion of the subject with his friend Professor MAITLAND. With respect to other parts of the editor's own work, he desires to express his sense of obligation to the treatises of Mr. Justice 0. W. HOLMES on the Common Law, of Sir FREDERICK Pollock and Mr. Justice WRIGHT on Possession, and of Sir FREDERICK POLLOCK and Sir WILLIAM Anson on Contracts.

An entirely new index to the book and to the cases, year-books, and statutes cited, has been prepared by Mr. KENNETH F. Wood of Lincoln's Inn.


30th July, 1894.



The following pages are intended as supplementary to the author's “ Principles of the Law of Real Property.” At the time when that work was written, the plan of the present treatise was not matured, and a chapter on “Personal Property and its Alienation" was inserted in that work. The contents of that chapter will be found interspersed in parts of the present volume; and should a second edition of the “Principles of the Law of Real Property” be called for, it is the author's intention to omit that chapter of his former work, and to supply its place by some further remarks on such elementary parts of the law of real property as may appear to have been but slightly touched upon before. The very favourable reception which the author's work on the Law of Real Property has met with from the profession has encouraged him to undertake, in the present work, a task, he believes, hitherto unattempted : for it is singular that, notwithstanding the rapid growth and now enormous value of personal property in this country, no treatise has yet appeared kaving for its object the introduction of the student in conveyancing to that large and increasing portion of his study and practice which comprises the law relating to such property. As to real property, he may take his choice amongst three or four publications, all having the same object of facilitating his studies; but the law of personal property, though sufficiently treated of in all that relates to it as purely mercantile, has not yet had any elementary treatise on its principles, so far as they affect the practice of conveyancing. The present work is an attempt to supply this deficiency, and, in conjunction with the author's “Principles of the Law of Real Property,” to afford the student a brief and simple introduction to the whole system of modern conveyancing. The novelty of the attempt has, however, increased the difficulty of the task. The author has endeavoured proportionably to increase his diligence and care. He can, however, scarcely hope to have escaped all' errors. And here he would caution the student against too implicit a reliance on the dicta of text-books. Elementary books cannot from their nature be completely accurate. As helpers to more perfect knowledge, they may be most valuable. But it would be as great a mistake for a student to remain satisfied with his knowledge of a textbook, as for an author to compress into an elementary work all that could possibly be said on the subject.


23rd May, 1848.

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