The Reports of That Late Reverend and Learned Judge, Thomas Owen, Esquire, One of the Justices of the Common Pleas

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

by Thomas Owen

Owen's Reports

Title page from The Reports of That Late and Learned Judge, Thomas Owen, George Wythe Collection, Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary.

Author Thomas Owen
Editor {{{editor}}}
Translator {{{trans}}}
Published London: Printed by T.R. for H. Twyford, T. Dring, and J. Place
Date 1656
Edition First
Language English
Volumes {{{set}}} volume set
Pages [12], 158 [i.e. 154], [8]
Desc. 4to (29 cm.)
Location Shelf E-4
  [[Shelf {{{shelf2}}}]]

Thomas Owen (d. 1598) was admitted to Lincoln's Inn in 1562, called to the bar in 1570, and made a bencher in 1579.[1] He had a reputation "above all [as] a man of very sound and reliable judgement."[2] His Reports are occasionally cited, but the book "enjoys no particular reputation one way or the other."[3] The volume most likely derives mainly from a French manuscript by Owen and held by Lincoln's Inn, although some of the cases occurred after Owen's death.[4]

Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library

Listed in the Jefferson Inventory of Wythe's Library as "Owen's [reports]" and given by Thomas Jefferson to Dabney Carr. Only one edition was published.[5] Three of the Wythe Collection sources (Dean's Memo[6], Brown's Bibliography[7] and George Wythe's Library[8] "on LibraryThing) include Owen's Reports. A copy at the University of Virginia may be Wythe's actual copy. It includes an inscription "Given by Thos. Jefferson to D. Carr 1806." It also has the signature on the title page: "Wm. Nelson, Gent."[9] The Wolf Law Library moved a copy from another rare book collection to the George Wythe Collection.

Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy

Recently rebound in period style. Spine features four bands with gilt rules and green label. Purchased through the generosity of Daniel W. Baran and Lena Stratton Baran, Class of 1936.

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. David Ibbetson, "Owen, Thomas (d. 1598)" in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, accessed September 18, 2013.
  2. Ibid.
  3. John William Wallace, The Reporters, Arranged and Characterized with Incidental Remarks, 4th ed. (Boston: Soule and Bugbee, 1882), 153.
  4. Wallace, The Reporters, 153-4.
  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), 551.
  6. Memorandum from Barbara C. Dean, Colonial Williamsburg Found., to Mrs. Stiverson, Colonial Williamsburg Found. (June 16, 1975), 13 (on file at Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary).
  7. Bennie Brown, "The Library of George Wythe of Williamsburg and Richmond," (unpublished manuscript, May, 2012) Microsoft Word file. Earlier edition available at:
  8. LibraryThing, s.v. Member: George Wythe," accessed on June 28, 2013.
  9. Brown, ""The Library of George Wythe of Williamsburg and Richmond."