The First Index of the Common Law, Written to Accompany the First Abridgement of the Common Law [Fitzherbert, Sir Anthony [1470-1538]. [Rastell, John (d. 1536)]. La Table Co[n]teynant en Sommarie les Choses Notables en la Graunde Abridgement, Composee par le Iudge Tresreverend Monsieur Anthony Fytzherbert, Dernierment Renue et Corige: Au Quell est Novelment Adioustee les Nombres des Cases, Avecques Ascuns Divisions Iammes Devant Imprimee. London: In Aedibus Ricardi Tottell, Decimi Novembris, 1565. ii, 210,  ff. Folio (11-1/4" x 8"). Contemporary paneled calf, rebacked in period style, raised bands and lettering piece to spine, hinges mended. Moderate rubbing and light gatoring to boards, heavier rubbing to board edges with wear to corners, alter armorial book plate (Hopetoun) to front pastedown. Title printed within woodcut architectural border. Moderate toning, occasional light soiling to margins, heavier soiling and some creases and edgewear to preliminaries and endleaves, occasional brief annotations in early chancery hand. $1,250. * Only edition. Arguably one of the most imposing volumes in the history of English law, Fitzherbert's Abridgment, which abridged 13,485 cases under 263 titles in alphabetical order, was the first serious attempt to arrange the common law in a systematic manner. First published in 1514 (or 1516), it was standard work for decades, Graham and Heckel refer to this work as the "book that 'made' the common law." The Table was compiled by Fitzherbert and improved by Rastell. Intended to accompany the first edition, it was completed by an unidentified third individual who adjusted the text so it could be used in conjunction with Richard Tottel's 1565 edition. Graham and Heckel, "The Book That 'Made' the Common Law," Law Library Journal 51 (1957) 101. Beale, A Bibliography of Early English Law Books R465. English Short-Title Catalogue S121335.
Book number 71513