Reports of Cases Determined in the Court of King's Bench

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by Thomas Barnardiston

Thomas Barnardiston (1706–1752), admitted to the Middle Temple in 1724, became a member of the bar in 1730 and was created sergeant-at-law in 1736.[1] He served as recorder of the borough of Dunwich, Suffolk from 1737 to 1750.[2] Barnardiston compiled two different sets of reports, one from the Court of Chancery, published in 1742, and this set from the Court of King's Bench, published in 1744. Both sets of reports received mixed reviews. Of the King's Bench reports, Lord Kenyon "held a low opinion ... regarding Barnardiston as ‘a bad reporter’ (R. v. Stone, 1801). Yet Lord Erskine once accepted a case cited from the king's bench reports as ‘a precise authority’ (Nelthorpe v. Law, 1807) ..."[3] Regardless of the criticisms, Holdsworth notes that the character of both sets of Barnardiston's reports has been largely vindicated.[4]

Bibliographic Information

Author: Thomas Barnardiston.

Title: Reports of Cases Determined in the Court of King's Bench: Together with Some Other Cases: from Trin. 12 Geo. I. to Trin. 7 Geo. II. with Tables of the Names of the Cases and of the Principal Matters.

Publication Info: [London], In the Savoy : Printed by H. Lintot (assignee of E. Sayer) and sold by W. Chinnery, 1744.

Edition: First edition; 2 volumes in 1.

Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library

Brown's Bibliography[5] includes Barnardiston's Reports based on quotations in the manuscript copy of John Marshall's law notes.

Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy

A single volume bound in modern calf with marbled boards; spine features six bands with stamped rules and gilt lettering to the label.

View this book in William & Mary's online catalog.


  1. N. G. Jones, "Barnardiston, Thomas (1706–1752)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Jan 2008, accessed 7 Sept 2013]
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. William Holdsworth, A History of English Law, (London: Methuen & Co., Sweet and Maxwell, 1938), 12:138.
  5. Bennie Brown, "The Library of George Wythe of Williamsburg and Richmond," (unpublished manuscript, May, 2012) Microsoft Word file. Earlier edition available at: