Scarce 1811 Study of English Forest Laws Lewis, Percival. Historical Inquiries, Concerning Forests and Forest Laws: With Topographical Remarks, Upon the Ancient and Modern State of the New Forest, In the County of Southampton. London: Printed for T. Payne, 1811. [iv], iii, , vi, 227,  pp. Copperplate pictorial frontispiece. Hand-colored folding map. Quarto (11-1/4" x 9"). Contemporary calf, rebacked retaining contemporary spine, blind rules to boards, gilt spine with raised bands and lettering piece, gilt tooling to board edges, gilt inside dentelles, cloth-reinforced hinges, marbled endpapers. Some rubbing to boards and extremities, corners bumped and somewhat worn, early armorial bookplate (of Samuel George Smith) to front pastedown. Moderate toning, light foxing in a few places. A handsome copy. $1,850. * Only edition. This is both a historical study and a response to the effects of the 1801 the Inclosure Act, which reduced public use of open (common) land, modified the boundaries of estates and altered the relationships between landlords, freeholders and tenants. Sympathetic to the landlords, Lewis aimed to a provide them with a historical background for any claims they wished to make. As he states in his preface, "attempts that of late years have been made to alter or abridge the rights and privileges of the owners of estates, within and adjoining [the New Forest, Southampton], have strongly urged the compiler of the following sheets to turn his attention to the subject." Initially limited to the New Forest, his research led him to uncover information in "the charters and ordinances, as well as the acts of the legislature, promulgated at different periods, [that apply] "(with very little exception) to all the other Forests of the kingdom" (i). OCLC locates 5 copies in North American Law Libraries (Harvard, Jenkins, Stanford, University of Georgia, University of Pennsylvania). Sweet & Maxwell, A Legal Bibliography of the British Commonwealth 2:215.
Book number 69108