Les Reports des Divers Special Cases
by Thomas Siderfin
Title page from Les Reports des Divers Special Cases, two volumes in one, George Wythe Collection, Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary.
|Published||London: Printed by W. Ralins, S. Roycroft, and H. Sawbridge, assigns of Richard and Edward Atkins for Samuel Keble|
|Volumes||2 volumes in 1 volume set|
|Desc.||Folio (32 cm.)|
Siderfin's Reports, published posthumously, includes "some cases not very intelligible; some, too, perhaps wrongly reported." The quality of the two parts is strongly divergent. The first part, thought by some to be the only part ever intended by the author for publication, covers cases from 1660 to 1670. The second part reports cases from 1657 to 1659. Cases from the latter caused one justice to remark that the volume was "fit to be burned.".
Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library
There is no doubt that George Wythe owned the first edition (1683-1684) of Siderfin's Reports. A copy of volume two at the Library of Congress includes his bookplate. Also listed in the Jefferson Inventory of Wythe's Library as "Siderfin’s [rep] fol." This was one of the books kept by Thomas Jefferson. All four of the Wythe Collection sources (Goodwin's pamphlet, Dean's Memo, Brown's Bibliography and George Wythe's Library on LibraryThing) list the first edition of Siderfin's Reports. While all four sources note that the Library of Congress copy was rebound, LibraryThing adds "Jefferson's 1783 catalog (page 124) and the Wythe List indicate that this title was in one volume, so perhaps a portion of the work was lost in rebinding, or Jefferson originally sold another copy to Congress." The Wolf Law Library moved a copy of the first edition from another rare books collection to the George Wythe Collection.
Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy
Bound recently in blind calf with gold tooled label; includes signature on title page: "[Gwynd Hany?]". Purchased through the generosity of Daniel W. Baran and Lena Stratton Baran, Class of 1936.
View this book in William & Mary's online catalog.
- John William Wallace, The Reporters, Arranged and Characterized with Incidental Remarks, 4th ed.(Boston: Soule and Bugbee, 1882), 295.
- Ibid., 297.
- Ibid., 296.
- Ibid., 195.
- E. Millicent Sowerby, Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson 2nd ed. (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1983), 2:339 [no.2059].
- Mary R. M. Goodwin, The George Wythe House: Its Furniture and Furnishings (Williamsburg, Virginia: Colonial Williamsburg Foundation Library, 1958), L.
- Memorandum from Barbara C. Dean, Colonial Williamsburg Found., to Mrs. Stiverson, Colonial Williamsburg Found. (June 16, 1975), 6, 14 (on file at Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary).
- 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.
- LibraryThing, s.v. "Member: George Wythe," accessed on March 4, 2014.