Should We Revive Trial by Battle? Kendall, E[dward] A[ugustus] [1776?-1842]. An Argument for Construing Largely the Right of an Appellee of Murder, To Insist on His Wager of Battle, And Also for Abrogating Writs of Appeal. Humbly Addressed to the Judges of His Majesty's Courts of Law and Both Houses of Parliament. London: Printed by B.R. Howlett, For Baldwin, Cradock, And Joy, 1817. xiv, 24 pp. Octavo (8" x 5"). Stab-stitched pamphlet bound into later library buckram. Light browning to text, light soiling to title page, "18" in early hand to upper margin, a few library markings to verso. A nice copy of a rare title. $750. * First edition. Notable as an author of children's books, Kendall was also active as a social reformer. An Argument is a satirical essay on contemporary criminal procedure. It "argues" for the revival of the medieval practice of trial by battle, a judicially authorized duel in which a trial decided by personal combat between the plaintiff and the defendant. A second edition was published in 1817, a third in 1818. The first edition is rare. OCLC locates 3 copies, 2 in North America (Newberry Library, University of Minnesota Law School). Sweet & Maxwell, A Legal Bibliography of the British Commonwealth 2:196.
Book number 69088