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that of the provinces of Canada in being of the flexible as opposed to the rigid type, although in the one case the treaty, and in the other the power of disallowing provincial Acts vested in the Governor-General in Council, sets a limit to the flexibility. The British North America Act by section 92 enables the legislature of each province to make laws for “the amendment from time to time, notwithstanding anything in this Act, of the constitution of the province, except as regards the office of the Lieutenant-Governor.” The constitution of the Dominion, on the other hand, is a rigid constitution. It cannot be altered by the Dominion Parliament, but only by an enactment of an outside body, namely, the Imperial Parliament.

Prof. MacNeill considers the constitution of the Irish Free State “a monument of brilliant, constructive statesmanship,” and he evidently classes it above the fundamental laws of the Dominion of Canada, the Commonwealth of Australia and the Union of South Africa.

R. W. S.

A Dictionary of English Law. By W. J. Byrne. Sweet &

Maxwell Limited. London.

The profession will find in this volume a valuable addition to the department of reference books in the library of the law. We understand that in its beginnings this compilation was intended to be a new edition of the late Mr. Sweet's well-known dictionary, but in the course of preparation it was found to outgrow the compass of that work, and so was given an independent character. It is more than a dictionary and something less than an encyclopædia of the law. It affords adequate information on many subjects that are only lightly touched upon by the dictionaries, such, for instance, as ancient statutes that have become part of the fabric of what we call the common law. The development of the law of tenures is succinctly shown, and many old customs are explained; while the salient doctrines of modern law in its various branches are stated with all the particularity possible in such a compilation.

The work as a whole bears the impress of comprehensive research.

C. M.


Transactions of the Grotius Society, Vol. 8. Problems of Peace and War. Sweet & Maxwell, Limited, London, 1923.

The Constitution of Canada. By W. P. M. Kennedy, M.A., Litt D. Humphrey Milford, Oxford University Press, London and Toronto.

Chambers Encyclopædia, New Edition, Volume 1, W. & R. Chambers, Limited, London and Edinburgh, 1923.

History of English Law. By W. S. Holdsworth, K.C., D.C.L. 3rd ed. Vols. II. and III. Methuen & Co. London,

Columbia Law Review for April, 1923.
Illinois Law Review for April, 1923.
Harvard Law Review for March, 1923.
Yale Law Journal for April, 1923.
American Bar Association Journal for March, 1923.
American Law Review for February, 1923.
Boston University Law Review, Vol. III., No. 1.

The Lawyer and Banker and Southern Bench and Bar Review, Vol. XVI., No. 2.

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With particular pleasure and interest we note that Mr. James M. Beck, now Solicitor-General of the United States, has been called to the English Bar by Gray's Inn in order to enable him to argue before the Privy Council a Canadian appeal to which his government is a party. The action taken does honour both to Gray's Inn and to the distinguished lawyer whose brilliant exposition of the Allied cause created such a profound impression in the neutral world during the early days of the War. Furthermore, it is a graceful and dignified act of international courtesy of a kind which does much more to foster good relations than the outpouring of many speeches, however eloquent they may be.

It is not so satisfactory to reflect that at the present time the action of Gray's Inn could not be repeated in Canada owing to the rules which limit membership of the Bar in each Province to British subjects. It is probably within the inherent power of any Superior Court to hear any person whom it pleases, irrespective of his qualifications, and in special cases American counsel have occasionally been admitted to audience before Canadian tribunals. But the courts under our system cannot confer the right to practise law, and a person thus irregularly admitted to audience has none of the privileges or the responsibilities of a quali

C.B.R. --VOL. 1.-2.5

fied lawyer. In England, where admission to the Bar is wholly controlled by the Inns of Court without statutory regulation, there is now no limitation of membership to British subjects, though it is only in the rarest cases that an alien is actually called. This has now been the rule since 1868, when members of the Bar were exempted from the necessity of taking the oath of allegiance. A notable instance of the admission of a distinguished foreigner to the English Bar is that of J. P. Benjamin, who is almost forgotten as the Attorney-General of the Confederate States, but will be long remembered as the author of "Benjamin on Sale."

Most of the American states demand citizenship as a condition of admission, but there are a few exceptions. There is no real reason why the Bar societies in Canada should not be entrusted with a discretionary power to waive the requirement in suitable cases. It is not likely that demands of this exceptional nature would be at all frequent, and the discretion of the Benchers should be a sufficient safeguard against any abuse. Sparingly and judiciously used the power to admit distinguished foreigners to the Canadian Bar would be of service both to international comity and to the higher interests of the profession.


To the lawyer who likes his case-law seasoned with wit and learning, the judgments of Mr. Justice McCardie of the English Bench are always a delight. His wit is never forced and his learning is only used to illumine what untouched by it were obscure. Withal, Sir William McCardie's decisions are replete with sound law. The recent case of Callot v. Nash (1923), 39 T. L. R. 292, reveals him in his happiest vein. It involves the question of a husband's responsibility for wearing apparel supplied to his wife. We venture to quote some of the learned judge's comments on the parties at variance before him :

*The dress of woman has been ever the mystery and sometimes the calamity of the ages. I will, however, venture to mention some of the items in this case. One is for a ' Gismonda ’ evening dress at 2,400 francs; another for a morning dress at 2,800 francs; another for a Pécheress' (or female sinner) evening dress at 3,700 francs; another for an evening dress at 3,800 francs; another for a 'Chrysalide' evening dress at 4,600 francs; and another for a fur stole at 15,000 francs. This account of the plaintiffs' is a mere fraction of the dressing debts incurred by the defendant's wife. I might well infer that it is as true in some cases to-day as it was when Ovid wrote 1,900 years ago, ‘Pars minima est ipsa puella sui,' that is, “The woman is the least part of herself.' Her [Mrs. Nash's] catholicity of profusion was remarkable. She threw herself beneath the fatal curse of luxury. She forgot that ostentation is the worst form of vulgarity. She ignored the sharp menace of future penury:

“The defendant here was a captain in the Army, but otherwise he had no particular rank or position. The word 'captain' is not to be taken as a synonym for prodigality. It is true that the husband and wife (particularly in the early period of marriage) lived at times in fashionable hotels, and dined and danced at fashionable restaurants. I must make allowance for the irrational tyranny of social convention; I do not overlook the requirements, however foolish, of so-called fashionable society. I am willing, moreover, to recognize the tonic properties of an occasional new costume

Husbands vary. Some repose on financial strength; some hover on the brink of mere indigence. Nothing was known of Captain Nash, except his address at a Paris hotel, or his address in London. He was merely one of a rapid succession of husbands. He was nothing more. He might well be as transitory as the other two. To the plaintiffs he was only an incidental male appurtenance to Mrs. Nash.

When I observe the consequences of Mrs. Nash's slavery to fashion, I might well

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