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quamdiů se bené gesserit, and his salary should be deters mined, as well as the fund from which it is drawn.
The first Act did not permit evidence by affidavit, but this should be extended to all proceedings, and the Court being for the relief of insolvents, there should be no stamp duties whatever.
The power should be given to award costs in all cases in which to the Commissioner it should seem right.
The Court should have power, by attachment or otherwise, to enforce obedience to its rules.
The Commissioner, as under the bankrupt laws, should be authorized to summon witnesses to attend, and give evidence when required.
The Court should have the power of nominating its own officers to execute its own process.
The Court, and the Court alone, should be competent to direct who should or should not practice in it as agents.
Summonses should be served on persons in distant places, in the same way as subpænas or summonses from the other Courts, and the expense of bringing them should be defrayed as under the bankrupt laws. If a debtor be unable to defray the expense of his witnesses, in cases where the Commissioner should think their attendance proper, he should apply to the Court, stating his inability to pay, leave ing it to the discretion of the Court to order the witness to attend without the expenses being paid, but charging the future property of the insolvent with the payment of it.
A power should be given to the Court to summon an assignee, with respect to his accounts or conduct.
The learned Serjeant submitted whether it would not be right to impart the same power to this jurisdiction to bar an estate tail, as is afforded under the bankrupt laws.
It would be proper to enact, that all the proceedings should be engrossed upon parchment, and a secure depository be assigned for the records.
It might be an amendment to direct the enquiry into the conduct of the insolvent two years, or less, previous to his going into custody. . It may be important to consider, whether the court should have a jurisdiction to compel a creditor preferred, to answer questions as to that preference, and to assign a discretion to the Court to compel him to give up the preference.' , The 35th and 55th sections should be amended.
The 27th section, which states that the pay or half-pay of any officer should be subject to be distributed in reduction
of the debts of an insolvent, is not comprehensive enough.
The words, “ pension or any other allowance,” should be added to it.
The 53d section refers to persons not natural born subjects. It should be permitted to the Court, if it feel it right, under all the circumstances, to discharge a foreigner without any condition.
By section 51, any prisoner charged with a debt at the suit of the crown, is not to be liberated. This should be al. tered, confining its operation “ to any debt really and bona fide due to, and sued for, and at the suit of the crown only."
It might facilitate the general convenience of the Court, and of the creditors, if the assignees were to be appointed by the Court, and if all monies were brought into it, and from thence paid to the creditor.
It would be an improvement, that the Court should be able to direct the money subject to its orders to be paid into the hands of some banker, as under the bankrupt laws.
The oath might properly be altered in one respect : omit. ting the words, " and that I have ever since been, and now am a prisoner,” &c. and leaving it generally that " the pri. soner bas, for and during the space of three calendar months and more, next before the day of presenting his petition, been, and now is, a prisoner in actual custody.”. · The Act should not allow an insolvent to be discharged under the Lords' Act, (if remanded by the Insolvent Debtors' Court), for any debt included in his schedule.
The learned Serjeant concluded his very acute and humane comment on the existing Law of Insolvency in these words:
“ Having thus stated all that has occurred to my experience in the Court, I trust the Committee will pardon me, when I refer them to an Act which passed in Philadelphia in 1812, on this subject. In that Act, no previous confinement is necessary; but from the instant an insolvent applics to be discharged under it, curators are appointed, and from that moment all the property is divested from the insul. vent, and vested in the curators; which of course prevents all fraud in the disposition of the property. But another part of that law is certainly of more importance, namely, that of the creditor compelling the debtor to give up all his property, and be discharged, on certain criteria of insolvency being established. What effect it may have there, I do not know; and whether it would be wise or not in this country to make it part of the amended law, does not become me to say. But should it be adopted here (and to a given extent it forms at present a part of the Lords' Act), Parliament, in its wisa dom, must precisely define, (as is done by the bankrupt-laws as to acts of bankruptcy) what shall be acts of insolvency. In stating what I have stated as to the practice of the law, permit me to say, that I refer to that of the Court here only. As to the practice at the different Quarter Sessions, the law has, in general, been correctly ad. ministered there. I hardly know an instance of any moment to the contrary. Many things may require alteration for the benefit of all parties; but it is highly to the credit of the Quarter Sessions. the judicious manner in which, in general, this law has been admi. pistered by those respectable magistrates. The committee will here permit me to refer them to that clause of the Act (sect. 14) which relates to the ability of a prisoner to pay his debts, after obtaining his discharge: a clause apparently founded on the purest principles of benevolence and justice; protecting the rigbts and interests of the creditor, on the one hand; and preventing caprice, inhumanity, or oppression, on the other; leaving it to the discretion of the Court to say, under all the circumstances of the case, what in justice should be appropriated to the payment of the creditors. If any thing can be added to that clause, to give it more effect, either for the creditor or the debtor, the Committee will, no doubt, in its wisdom, suggest it.” (p. 211.)
It is evident, from the paragraph we have just cited, that it is the bearing of the opinion of the learned Commis sioner, that instead of the three months' imprisonment di. rected by the act, it would be preferable not to expose a debtor to the vicious intercourse of a public jail even for that short period, and to adopt the scheme of American jurisprudence, which, at the same time that it prevents the contagion of evil example, and is so far beneficial to the debtor, gives full consideration to the state of the creditor, and by appointing curators for the property of the former, prevents all fraud in the disposition of it. We trust that this subject will receive from the British Parliament legislat. ing for the greatest commercial country in the world, the full consideration it deserves.
As the sentiments of the learned Commissioner are likely to form the ground-work of the future policy on this subject, we will presume to submit, from an irresistible feeling of its importance, a few observations.
It will have been seen, that it is the wish of Mr. Serjeant Runnington to assimilate, as nearly as possible, the laws of bankruptcy and insolvency, preserving however, the essential distinction for the benefit of the creditor; that under the latter, no certificate or other document should exonerate the debtor from the liability of the future property he may ac
quire. By what passed during the last session of Parlia. ment, it appears, that the bankrupt laws themselves are likely to uudergo a revision, with a view to their amend. ment, and it will be extremely desirable, that the correspondence which is sought between these and the insolvent acts, should be contemplated in the alterations that may be suggested, as to both of them.
The changes recommended, it will have been seen, will invest the single Commissioner of the Court of Insolvency with the same authority as the joint Commissioners in Bankruptcy, and the latter are under the immediate controul of the Court of Chancery On the safety of assigning such a power to the present Commissioner, we have no doubt; but it deserves attention whether the same security can be expected, when, from the lapse of time, the superintendance e hall devolve into other hands, and the just confidence reposed in an individual should not compromise the more remote interests of society. According to the advice of the learned Serjeant, the powers of the Court would be very extensive, he would enable the Judge to bar an estate tail, * and to compel witnesses to attend without the payment of their expenses, excepting on the contingency of property subsequently devolving to the insolvent.
The report from the Select Committee will be the more satisfactory to the general class of readers, because it supplies information, not only from professional authority, but from a great number of intelligent tradesmen who have full practical knowledge of the effects of the law, and acute sensibility as to any pernicious tendency they contemplate in it. We cannot conclude without expressing our approbation, not only of the zeal of men who thus stood forward to disclose useful facts, but to the members of Parliament by whom statements, from whatever quarter, were candidly received, and attentively considered. If, on all occasions, the same industry and vigilance had been employed in acquiring the knowledge that should be the basis of all legis. lation, British jurisprudence, which is the admiration of a world, ignorant of half the wisdom and humanity of its provisions, would receive the unmixed and unqualified approval of those better acquainted with its principles, who have the happiness to live upder its benign influence and operation.
* By the bankrupt laws, as far back as the reign of James the First, it was thought proper to give the commissioners and assignees under those laws power, by bargain and sale, to convey estates tail without the form of a recovery for the benefit of creditors.
ART. VIII.-AVoyage round the Il'orld from 1806 to 1812,
in which Japan, Kamschalka, the Aleutian Islands, and the Sandwich Islands were visited. Including a Narratite of the Author's Shipwreck on the Island of Sumack, and his subsequent Wreck in the Ship’s Long-boat. With in Account of the present State of the Sandwich Islands, and a Vocabulary of their Language. By ARCHIBALD CAMP. Bell. Edinburgh, Constable and Co. London, Long.
man and Co. 1816. Svo. Pp. 288. No doubt is entertained that the interests of science and commerce among civilized nations have been advanced by remote discoveries; but it may be questioned if the inhabitants of such countries have been equally benefitted by their visitors. Whatever uncertainty may exist with regard to other situations, in the Sandwich Islands we believe many advantages have been obtained. Not forty years have elapsed since the appearance of Captain Cook, and in this short interval they have been provided with workinen, native or European, of every description, and the King “ pose sesses a navy of nearly sixty sail of decked vessels, built upon the islands, whilst almost every ship which navigates the Pacific, finds shelter, provisions, or trade in his har: bours.” In the Preface it is observed,
• In Tamaahmaah these islanders possess one of those remarkable characters, who, like Alfred or Peter the Great, seem destined to hasten the progress of civilization. He is known in this country from the accounts of Turubull, Lisainski, and Langsdorf; but as none of these navigators ever saw that chief, their accounts are cousequently very imperfect; the length of time, however, during which our author remained in his family, afforded him opportunities of observation not enjoyed by those of higher qualifications, and in some measure compensate for the uuavoidable defects of his education." (p. 12.) · Archibald Campbell, on his return to his native country in April, 1812, had suffered the loss of both his feet, and from the unskilful manner in which the amputation was performed, the wounds have never healed, and he now finds employment by contributing with his violin to the amusement of the passengers on board the steam-boat in the river Clyde. In one of these vessels, his appearance attracted the notice of the Editor of this work, and the answers he gave to some inquiries excited so much curiosity, that the infirm musician was assisted and protected; the inquiries were