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His remains were consigned to the dust by affectionate children, whom he had been permitted to see already, filling a space in the public eye; and the community in which he had lived paid a willing tribute of love and honor to his memory.' pp. 127—132.

ART. VIII.-GREENLEAF'S REPORTS. Reports of Cases argued and determined in the Supreme

Judicial Court of the State of Maine. By Simon GREENLEAF, Counsellor at Law. Vol. V. Portland. Shirley & Hyde. 1829. pp. 524.

The volume before us, like those which preceded it, bears ample testimony to the correct judgment and sound learning of the judges who preside in the Supreme Court of Maine. The opinions delivered, are generally clear and logical, and show a faithful and attentive examination of the questions presented for consideration.

The court is fortunate in having so accomplished a reporter as Mr. Greenleaf, who is familiar with law both theoretically and practically, and who comprehends the full effect and bearing of the arguments and decisions which he records. Without this extensive legal skill and sagacity, there is always danger that a reporter will misrepresent the opinions advanced by counsel and the court, that his statements of cases will be clogged with a load of irrelevant matter, while important particulars are omitted, and that his abstracts will be inaccurate and unsatisfactory.

Mr. Greenleaf appears to have aimed throughout his volume to present cases in as condensed a form as was consistent with rendering them clear and intelligible. The statements of facts are carefully confined to those circumstances which relate to the questions of law presented to the court; and we are never troubled with those repetitions of which we have sometimes had occasion to complain in other reporters. Indeed, in a very few instances, Mr. Greenleaf's study of brevity has led him to omit in his statements circumstances which would have rendered the cases more easily and readily inteldigible.

The arguments of counsel, where they are given, are usually stated with sufficient clearness and precision.

The abstracts are, in most instances, well made, presenting the points decided by the court, with great brevity and accuracy. In some few instances, however, the reporter has neglected points which were raised at the bar, and decided by the court. We question the expediency of such omissions, for although the points thus neglected are usually of familiar principles, yet it is often convenient, especially for the younger members of the profession, to be able to find from the index, that certain principles have been recognised by the judges under whom they are practising.

The Index is for the most part skilfully arranged under appropriate titles. A few of these titles, however, struck us as exceptionable, because they are not in general use, and are not those which would occur to one consulting the index on similar subjects. We object, for this reason, to such titles as Authority, Construction, and Monuments. In one respect this index differs from those in many reports, in not repeating any point under different heads. In this respect we think that the plan of the reporter is skilful and scientific; for, except in some instances of not very frequent occurrence, where a point which belongs to one head is so closely connected with another point belonging to another head, that the second point cannot be made intelligible without presenting the first with it, we can see no reason for repeating the same sentence under different titles. Every point should be placed in the division which is thought most appropriate for it, with references from the other titles under which it would be likely to be sought.

We observe that the expression, & als. sometimes follows the name of the plaintiff. See pp. 153, 400, 458. We presume it was meant as an abbreviation of et alios, and used to signify that there was more than one person plaintiff beside the one named. This is evidently an oversight, for the expression ought to be d. alii, in the nominative; but it seems to us that there is no need of saying any thing more than & al.

The point decided in the case of the Bangor Bank v. Hook, p. 174, is of some interest to the commercial community. It is thus stated by Mr. Greenleaf : The damages on a protested bill of exchange are not given as a liquidated arbitrary mulct, but as a compensation to the holder for the expense of remitting the money to the place where the bill ought to have been paid. And therefore if the holder receive part



of the money of the acceptor, this diminishes the damages, pro rata.' In this case the money received of the acceptor had been collected in a suit against him.

Weston, J. in giving the opinion of the court says,

Parsons, C. J. in delivering the opinion of the court, in Grimshaw v. Bender, 6. Mass. 157, says, is the rule of damages established by the law merchant, is in our opinion absolutely controlled by the immemorial usage in this state. Here the usage is, to allow the holder of the bill the money for which it was drawn, reduced to our currency at par, and also the charges of protest, with American interest on these sums, from the time when the bill should have been paid; and the further sum of one tenth of the money for which it was drawn, with interest upon it from the time payment of the dishonored bill was demanded of the drawer. But nothing has been allowed for re-exchange, whether it is below or at par.'

And he adds, “The origin of this usage was probably founded in the convenience of avoiding all disputes about the price of re-exchange, and to induce purchasers to take their bills, by a liberal substitution of ten per cent. instead of a claim for re-exchange.” It is manifest, then, that the ten per cent. damages are given instead of re-exchange; and we must understand that the damages given by statute upon inland bills, are allowed upon the same principle; that is, to indemnify the holder for the expense he incurs, or is supposed to incur, in receiving the money at the place where the bill is drawn, and transmitting it to the place of its destination, where it was originally made payable. That this is the only ground upon

which these damages are given, is not only supported by a consideration of the reason upon which the claim is founded on foreign bills, but from the fact that, by the statute, the scale of damages in regard to dishonored inland bills, depends upon the distance of the state or territory, where payable, from this state. Distance is also made the criterion upon which damages are allowed upon bills of one hundred dollars or upwards, drawn or endorsed here, payable in another place within the state; they being given only where that is distant seventy-five miles or more from the place of drawing or endorsing. If the disappointment, or considerations other than the expense of the re-exchange, constituted the reason or basis of the damages, there seems no sufficient reason why they should not be allowed, where the place of payment is within the distance of seventy-five miles. Now if a bill made payable in a foreign country, protested for non-payment or non-acceptance, is afterwards there paid and received, there arises no claim for re-exchange; or that which is substituted here, the ten per cent. damages. So if it be partially paid and received abroad, at the place where made payable, this claim is reduced pro tanto. It is only where the bill is returned home, and there taken up, that this allowance can be demanded. The damages are incident to the principal. If that be paid, or as far as paid at the place appointed, the incident or accretion, which would otherwise attach to it, ceases. For the injury occasioned by the delay of payment, the law deems the interest an equivalent.' pp. 176, 177.

We cannot give our entire assent to this reasoning. In whatever manner the custom of paying damages on bills may have originated, whether as a liquidated compensation in the place of re-exchange, or not, it is very obvious that the statute damages provided in Maine and most of the other states, do give a compensation to the holder of the bill which is very far beyond the amount of re-exchange; and the very statute on which the judge is commenting, gives damages varying from three to nine per cent. according to the distance of the states in which the bill is payable, the very lowest of which rates is much beyond the re-exchange, between any commercial places in the United States, however distant from one another. The law then, in fact, gives a compensation to the holder of the bill beyond the re-exchange,-in most cases very much beyond it. What reason, then, is there for supposing, as Judge Weston does, that the legislature did not intend, what it has in fact done? In most of the states damages are allowed on dishonored bills payable out of the country, in addition to exchange at the current rate. It is evident then that these statutes intend to give the holder of the dishonored bill a compensation for the injury which will probably accrue to him from not receiving his money at the time and place expected; and we believe there can be no doubt, that such compensation was intended by the legislatures of Massachusetts and Maine in passing the statute in question. If such was their intention, the right of the holder of the bill in this case to damages, accrued and became vested when the bill was dishonored by non-payment, and was not diminished by his subsequently receiving a part of the money of the acceptor.

In the case of Fox v. Adams, p. 245, which relates to the validity of an assignment for the benefit of creditors, one of the points stated in the summary is as follows: The time limited in such assignment for creditors to become parties to it, may be so short or so long as to justify a presumption of fraud, and thus defeat its operation. The time provided in the assignment was seventy days. Weston, J. in giving the opinion of the court, after citing with approbation the opinion of Story, J. in Halsey v. Fairbanks upon this point, proceeds,

"The law requires in all transactions the most perfect good faith. If therefore an instrument, purporting to be made for the benefit of all the creditors of the party making the assignment, does not allow them a reasonable and sufficient time to avail themselves of its provisions, its apparent fairness is merely specious and delusive. So also it is liable to objection, if the time be unreasonably extended, and the adjustment of the business, and the claims of the creditors, thereby unnecessarily delayed. From the property assigned, and the debts and credits of the defendants, detailed in the schedules attached to the assignment, it appears that their business was much extended, and that they were engaged in foreign commerce. They had many creditors, and were indebted in an amount approaching four hundred thousand dollars. The residence of their creditors does not appear; but we know they were not confined to their own state; and as they were numerous, and the dealings of their house extensive, it would take some time to notify them, and to afford a fair opportunity to all, who chose to do so, to come into the arrangement. It is difficult to account for the fact that so small a proportion in number and amount executed an instrument apparently equitable, and which proffered advantages only to such as thus expressed their assent, if the creditors generally had notice within the period limited, and a reasonable time to make proper inquiries into the state and condition of the concerns of the defendants. Under these circumstances, we are strongly inclined to the opinion that the shortness of the time constitutes a sufficient objection to the validity of the assignment against such creditors, as have not expressly assented thereto. p. 123.

The case did not turn upon this point, but the opinion expressed that seventy days under the circumstances of the case, was not a sufficient time for creditors to come in, is important; and it would have been well for the reporter in his abstract to have taken some notice of the particular circumstances which the court appear to consider as affecting the validity of the assignment, in addition to the more general proposition which he lays down.

The point decided in Perkins v. Dunlap, p. 268, is one of considerable interest. The decision seems to us highly reasonable, and is supported with great ability by Chief Justice Mellen, whose opinion we extract.

Mellen, C. J. The facts of the case are these. Abbot being the owner of the Dunning-Tavern estate, contracted with Nickels,

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