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    The Working Library of an
    Eighteenth Century English Barrister

    The Working Library of William Kempe, Barrister of Lincoln's Inn, Mid-Eighteen Century. London: Various publishers, 1657-1794. Forty-two volumes of court reports and case studies from the working library of William Kempe. Texts in a combination of English, French, and Latin. Included are the legal case "Reports" of Bunbury (1755), Cowper (1783), Dyer (1688), Hetley (1657), Jones (1675), Moore (1663), Pollexfen (1702), Siderfin (1683), Skinner (1728), Vaughan (1677), and several others. There are a few sets of books, including, [Coke Upon Littleton]. The First Part of the Institutes of the Laws of England in Three Volumes (1794); Edward Wood. A Complete Body of Conveyancing, In Theory and Practice... in Three Volumes (1790-1793). [and:] Francis Vezey. Cases Argued and Determined, in the High Court of Chancery, in the Time of Lord Chancellor Hardwicke. In two volumes (1771). Partial sets include: [Second and Third Parts] of the Reports of Sr George Croke Kt. (1683). [and:] [William Leonard, editor]. Reports and Cases of Law: Argued and Adjudged in the Courts at Westminster, in the Times of the Late Queen Elizabeth and King James. Mixed editions, first (1658) and second (1687) editions of the first part, the third part (1686), and the forth part (1675).

    Of special note is the New Law-Dictionary of Giles Jacob (1782) which was one of the most widely used legal references of its time.

    Most of the volumes are bound in full calf and rebacked with raised spine bands, gilt lettered title labels, and gilt stamped publication years in compartments. Some with manuscript ink title on fore-edge. Engraved frontispiece portraits, few plates or folding tables; bookplates, several with the armorial plate of "Hoper" and a few partially removed; and numerous ink holograph annotations attesting to the working nature of Kempe's library.

    Boards rubbed and scuffed, some with surface leather losses and soiling. Previous owner's names and inscriptions. Occasional paper repairs, few with minor loss to text. Pages with edge wear, corner bends and creases; few edge tears or page cuts. Varying degrees of foxing, and soiling, occasional stains. Overall a very good collection of legal resources from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    6th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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