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The history of contract in early English equity,

Author: W T Barbour; George William Coopland
Publisher: New York, Octagon Books, 1974.
Series: Oxford studies in social and legal history, v. 4, no. 7-8.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
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Genre/Form: History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Barbour, W. T. (Willard Titus)
History of contract in early English equity.
New York, Octagon Books, 1974
(OCoLC)987967991
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: W T Barbour; George William Coopland
ISBN: 0374961638 9780374961633
OCLC Number: 1133598
Notes: Reprint of the 1914 editions published by Clarendon Press, Oxford, which were issued as v. 4, no. 7-8, of Oxford studies in social and legal history.
Description: vii, 237, 166 pages illustrations 23 cm
Contents: Introduction: The purpose of this essay --
Part I. Contract in the common law --
Chapter I. Introductory --
Chapter II. The common law actions --
Section I. Account --
Origin and nature of account --
Limitations on the action ; it succumbs to competition with chancery --
Section II. Covenant and the contract under seal --
I. Action of covenant --
Origin and development --
Limitations on the action --
(1) Required a sealed writing to support it --
(2) Lay only for recovery of damages --
Disadvantages of convenant --
II. Contract under seal --
Effect of attaching a seal --
Strict interpretation of written instrument --
Defences against a deed --
Section III. Debt and detinue --
Intimate relation between the two actions --
Debt represents an archaic conception --
Debet et detinet : the distinction --
Detinue --
I. Nature of detinue --
Was it founded on contract or on tort? --
II. Limitations on the use of the action --
Debt --
I. Characteristics of the action --
II. Doctrine of quid pro quo --
III. Was agency recognized by the action? --
IV. Proof --
V. Disadvantages of debt --
Section IV. Assumptsit --
Assumpsit a delictual action perverted from its original purpose --
Contract and tort : contract in the Year Books --
Development of assumpsit --
Action allowed for misfeasance --
Why does an assumpsit appear in trespass on the case? --
Original conception of a tort --
Extension of the conception --
Struggle to carry the action from misfeasance to non-feasance --
(a) In trespass on the case --
A pivotal case: 14 H. VI. 18-58 --
(b) In deceit --
'Covenant' converted into a tort --
Motives which induced the judges to allow the action to lie for non-feasance --
Assumpsit becomes a contractual action in 1504 --
Limitation imposed on the action : deceit to the plaintiff --
Section V. Summary --
The defects of the common law in the fifteenth century --
Chapter III. The doctrine of consideration --
Two distinct problems in history of parol contract --
'Consideration' first appears in sixteenth century in assumpsit --
Old meaning of the term consideration --
Theories as to origin of the doctrine --
I.A modified generalization of the requirement of quid pro quo --
Criticism --
II. Identified with the Detriment to the plaintiff in assumpsit --
Criticism --
III. A principle imported into the action of assumpsit from equity --
Criticism --
Were parol contracts enforced in equity? --
Purpose of second part of this essay. Part II. Contract in equity --
Chapter I. Introductory --
Material upon which this essay is based --
Nature of the early chancery proceedings --
Relative number of cases involving contract --
Absence of answers and indorsements --
Why was it desirable to bring a case in equity? --
Division of the subject --
Chapter II. The scope of equitable jurisdiction in contract --
Principle of classification of cases --
Section I. Petitions brought in chancery despite the existence of a remedy at common law in theory --
Reasons for bringing these cases in equity --
1. The parties --
2. The place where the transaction occurred --
3. Inequality of parties --
(1) Poverty of the petitioner --
(2) Maintenance and power of the defendant --
4. Failure of common law practices --
Did the chancellor decide these cases on principles of equity and conscience? --
Section II. Petitions relating to obligations under seal --
1. Obligation satisfied, but obligor has no acquittance --
2. Parol condition annexed to a simple (unconditional) obligation --
3. Obligation executed for a specific purpose --
4. Variation of obligation by subsequent parol agreement --
5. Inquiry into consideration of obligations --
Section III. Petitions for recovery of 'debts' --
I. Cases in which the law theoretically provides a remedy --
Reasons for bringing such cases in equity --
II. Cases in which there was no remedy at law --
1. Debt proved b obligation which is lost or destroyed --
2. Transactions abroad --
3. Actions against executors --
Must the executor have assets? --
4. No definite sum agreed upon --
5. Implied promise to pay --
6. Benefit conferred on a third party --
7. Assignment of debts --
Novation distinguished --
Section IV. Petitions for recovery of personal property --
Superiority of the equitabe remedy --
Section V. Petitions against vendors of land --
1. Types of cases in which the subpeona is brought --
2. The parties --
3. Relief granted --
(a) Specific performances --
(b) Damages --
Section VII. Marriage settlements --
1. Types of cases --
2. Parties --
3. Relief granted --
Section VIII. Partnership --
Section IX. Agency --
Section X. Guarantee and Indemnity --
1. Guarantee --
2. Indemnity --
Section XI. Agreements of a general character --
1. Agreements for personal services --
(a) Promise to erect a building --
(b) Carriage and delivery of goods --
(c) Special services --
2. Agreements for the compromise of claims, &c. --
(1) Cases of 'award' --
(a) Promise to 'stand by' an award --
(b) Promise to make an award in a particular way --
(2) Agreements concerning litigation --
(3) Performance of a specific act, in general --
Chapter III. Procedure and proof --
I. Procedure --
The petition, its character --
The answer and other pleadings --
The relief --
II. Proof --
Petitioners offer to testify --
Examination of defendant --
An illustrative case --
Method of examination --
Chapter IV. The theory of contract in chancery --
Absence of remedy at law --
The motive of the chancellor --
Reason and conscience --
Three classes of cases --
I. Cases in which a party has failed to avail himself of his rights --
II. Enforecement of parol contract --
Principles upon which the chancellor acted in enforcing parol contract --
Conclusion --
Note A: Detinue --
Note B: Trespass sur le cas --
Appendix of cases --
Index.
Series Title: Oxford studies in social and legal history, v. 4, no. 7-8.
Other Titles: Abbey of Saint-Bertin and its neighbourhood, 900-1350.
Responsibility: by W.T. Barbour. The abbey of Saint-Bertin and its neighbourhood, 900-1350, by G.W. Coopland.

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