Les Reports de Sir Gefrey Palmer, Chevalier & Baronet ...: Imprime & Publie per l'Original

From Wythepedia: The George Wythe Encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

by Sir Gefrey Palmer

Les Reports de Sir Gefrey Palmer

Title page from Les Reports de Sir Gefrey Palmer, George Wythe Collection, Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary.

Author Sir Gefrey Palmer
Editor {{{editor}}}
Translator {{{trans}}}
Published London: Printed by the assigns of R. and E. Atkyns, for Robert Pawlet
Date 1678
Edition First
Language French
Volumes {{{set}}} volume set
Pages 2, 567 (i.e. 559), [43]
Desc. Folio (32 cm.)
Location Shelf E-5
  [[Shelf {{{shelf2}}}]]

Sir Geoffrey Palmer (1598 – 1670) entered the Middle Temple in 1616 and was called to the bar in 1623. After an early career in conveyancing, Palmer was elected to the Long Parliament in 1640 but withdrew in 1642, following the vote authorizing the militia ordinance.[1] A member of the royalist parliament in 1644, he was appointed solicitor-general in 1645. A Royalist, Palmer managed to practice law in London during the 1650's and, after the Restoration, became the first attorney-general to Charles II. In 1660 he was also elected bencher of the Middle Temple.[2] In 1663 Palmer edited the reports of his father-in-law, Sir Francis Moore.


His own case reports, Les Reports de Sir Gefrey Palmer, Chevalier et Baronet, gathered and edited in his earlier career as an attorney, were published posthumously by his son in 1678. Palmer's Reports includes cases primarily from the King's Bench from 1619 to 1629. "This work set a new standard for law reports as it named the barristers and judges for each statement made. Whether Palmer did more than edit them is doubtful."[3] Considered to be "of respectable authority"[4] but "the learning to be found in the volume, is in a great degree obsolete."[5] Only one edition was printed, but it "bears the different dates of 1678, 1688, and 1721."[6]

Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library

Brown's Bibliography[7] includes the 1688 edition of Palmer's Reports based on quotations in the manuscript copy of John Marshall's law notes. In The Reporters, John William Wallace asserts that only one edition was printed regardless of the varying dates on the title page.[8] Preferring a copy with the earliest date, the Wolf Law Library purchased a copy with the 1678 imprint.

Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy

Bound in full old calf, blind tooled ruling, rehinged. Title in old hand on fore-edge. Previous owner's signature on title page. Purchased from Krown & Spellman, Booksellers.

Images of the library's copy of this book are available on Flickr. View the record for this book in William & Mary's online catalog.

Full text

See also


  1. Louis A. Knafla, "Palmer, Sir Geoffrey, first baronet (1598–1670)" in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, accessed September 30, 2013.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. John William Wallace, The Reporters, Arranged and Characterized with Incidental Remarks, 4th ed. (Boston: Soule and Bugbee, 1882), 254-255.
  5. J. G. Marvin, Legal Bibliography or a Thesaurus of American, English, Irish, and Scotch Law Books (Philadelphia: T. & J. W. Johnson, Law Booksellers, 1847), 552.
  6. Wallace, The Reporters, 255.
  7. Bennie Brown, "The Library of George Wythe of Williamsburg and Richmond," (unpublished manuscript, May, 2012) Microsoft Word file. Earlier edition available at: https://digitalarchive.wm.edu/handle/10288/13433
  8. Wallace, The Reporters, 255.