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“ The Laws of Business," says an eminent jurist in discussing its merits, " is a work which, through its former editions, has already acquired a wide. spread reputation for its practical usefulness both to the professional and non-professional man."

Its continued popularity with the legal profession as well as among con. veyancers, commissioners, notaries, justices, bankers, and business men of every class is a convincing proof that it has filled an actual want. In preparing the present edition such additions and improvements have been made as seemed likely to add to the practical value of the work, and no efforts have been spared to make it a safe guide in every business question which is likely to arise in any State of the Union. Large additions have been made to the former editions, especially of Abstracts of the Laws of all the States, in relation to such matters as Deeds of all kinds, Chattel Mortgages, Leases, Wills, Mechanics Liens, Days of Grace and Holidays, Statutes of Limitations, Actions, Recovery and Collection of Debts, Attachment, Arrest, Garnishment or Trustee Process, Judgment, Exemp. tions, Stay Laws, Homestead Rights, etc., etc., and a new chapter on the Legal Rights and Obligations of Farmers; Help, and their rights and duties; Trespassers, Adjoining Roads, Rivers and Ponds, Fences, Farmways. Repairs, Fixtures, and many other topics. The Forms have been so multiplied as to embrace almost every description of contract and conveyance in com. mon use, from an ordinary note of hand to a corporation deed. The new Forms for taking depositions and affidavits as well as corporation acknowledgments will, it is hoped, be of special service to commissioners, notaries, and justices, while the many new Forms for other purposes will meet the re quirements of the practical business man. Some of these Forms will be found brief and simple; others, especially those in relation to real estate, are full and minute. No one but a lawyer knows how necessary it is to use the technical, customary, and established language of Form, every phrase of which has passed through repeated litigation, and has thus acquired a certain meaning. Much in such Forms will seem, to those ignorant of law, to be wordy and full of repetition; but, if the Forms are made apparently more simple by omissions and abbreviations, they may be good, and they may not; and whether they are or not cannot be known except by litigation. And he must be a bold lawyer who would undertake to prefer Forms of his own make to those which the Courts and common use have sanctioned. Wherever possible, Forms have been given which were thus sanctioned, be cause the very object of this book is to enable persons to use it to conduct their business affairs with ease, safety, and certainty.

We think such a book possible, and venture to hope that we have made such a book. We know only that whatever labor and care could do to make the book useful and safe, has been done. In this edition we have brought the law down to the present time, have revised the whole work, and, as already said, have made large additions which will, we hope, in. crease its usefulness and value.


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THE PURPOSE AND USE OF THIS BOOK. The title of this work indicates, to some extent, its purpose and character; but, as they are in certain respects peculiar, it is thought that some remarks respecting them may make the volume more useful. Many years ago, after more than twentyfive years of practice at the bar, I accepted the office of Dane Professor in the Law School of Harvard University. I employed whatever leisure the duties of that office left me, in preparing a series of text-books on Commercial Law. I have published many volumes; and the manner in which they have been received by my professional brethren, calls for my most grateful acknowledgments. One of those works was entitled “The Elements of Mercantile Law," and was intended as a general epitome of Commercial Law. I began it mainly for the use of lawyers, but at the same time hoping that it might be so written as to be useful to others, who were not lawyers. Before I had made much progress in it, the hope that one book could answer these two purposes faded away; and I finally made that work exclusively for lawyers. But the circumstance that many persons who were not lawyers, and did not intend to be, have bought my works,—the remarks that have reached me in relation to them, and particularly in reference to that above mentioned, and many other kindred facts,-have given additional strength to a belief that led me to prepare this vol. ume, for wide and general use. That belief is, that there is a strong and growing dispositicn,


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