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PO W E R S.
EDIVARD BURTENSHAW SUGDEN, Esq.
OF LINCOLN'S INN, BARRISTER AT LAW.
PRINTED for W. REED, BELL YARD, TEMPLE BAR;
The subject of the following work embraces a very large portion of the law of real property. It is a subject which demands and must attract the conveyancer's peculiar attention: the connection and symmetry of its parts, while they excite the admiration of the student, will amply repay the labour which the study of it requires.
As a work upon Powers has already been written, which has arrived to a second edition, it may be expected that some reason should be given for presenting theprofession with a newone. It may be thought to be a sufficient reason that Mr. Powell's Essay embraces but a partial view of the subject. But had that been the only objection to the performance, his deficiencies might have been supplied without retreading his steps. 'The execution, however, of what Mr. Powell did
attempt is not such as to invite to a study of the subject, or to render his work practically useful. It is common to meet with statements of facts, occupying many pages, which serve only to confound the attention, when the precise point decided might have been expressed in the same number of lines. The errors in law, as well as in the statement of facts, are very numerous, and in few instances, is much labour of research exhibited. The author of the present volume, however, wishes it never to be forgotten, that as far as Mr. Powell did treat of the subject, he was the first who attempted it.
The writer deprecates too severe an examination of his work from the preceding observations. It is more easy to criticise the works of others, than to write a better on the same subject. His pretensions to notice are, that it has been his endeavour to exhaust the subject: an independent and original view has been taken of every part of it; the report of every case has been anxiously consulted; and niuch labour has been bestowed in examining reported cases, with the Register's books, and searching for cases not in
print. The writer has also attempted to treat of this abstruse and intricate learning in a familiar and practical way, to avoid burdensome statements of cases, and to introduce the points decided with as much brevity as appeared to be consistent with accuracy and perspicuity. In no instance has he shrunk from the consideration of the difficulties which presented themselves, although, following Bacon's example, he has directed his endeavours rather to open the law upon doubts, than doubts upon the law. How far he has succeeded in this arduous attempt, it is for the Profession of which he is a member to decide. He has in common with others to plead as an excuse for any inaccuracies in so long a work, that it was written in moments snatched from the labours of his profession, with few opportunities of taking a continued and connected view of the subject.
12th March, 1808.