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own justification, he will wish to make public. The avenues to corruption are thus obftructed, and the fources of litigation closed.

One of the effects, expected from the establishment of a national judiciary, was the uniformity of judicial decision; an attempt, therefore, to report the cases decided by the Supreme Court of the United States, can not need an apology; and perhaps none can be given for the inadequate manner in which that attempt has been executed. It has been the endeavor of the Reporter to give a faithful fummary of the arguments of counfel. To do them complete juftice he acknowledges himself incompetent. In no inftance, perhaps, has he given the words in which the ideas were conveyed, as his attention was almoft entirely occupied in 'collecting the point of the argument. He may have omitted ideas deemed important, and added others fupposed to be impertinent; but in no cafe has he intentionally diminished the weight of the argument. It may pos, fibly be alleged that he has introduced into the reports of fome of the cafes more of the record than was neceffary. If he has erred in this, he has been led into the error by obferving that many of the cafes in the books are rendered useless by the want of a fufficient statement of the case as it appeared upon the record; and he imagined it would be a lefs fault to infert too much, than to omit any thing material.

He has been relieved from much anxiety, as well as refponfibility, by the practice which the court has adopt

ed of reducing their opinion to writing, in all cafes of difficulty or importance; and he tenders his tribute of acknowledgement for the readiness with which he was permitted to take copies of those opinions.

He is indebted to Mr. Caldwell, for his notes of the cafes which were decided prior to February term 1803, without the affiftance of which he would have been unable to report them, as his own notes of those cafes, not having been taken with that view, were very imperfect.

He also feels his obligation to those gentlemen of the bar, whose politeness has prompted a ready communication of their notes, which have enabled him more correctly to report their arguments.

Should an apology be deemed necessary for the liberty he has taken in his notes to some of the cafes reported, that apology exifts in a wish candidly to inveftigate the truth. In doing this in a respectful manner, he does not feel confcious of giving cause of offence to liberal and candid minds.

If the fate of the prefent volume should not prove him totally inadequate to the task he has undertaken, it is his intention to report the cafes of fucceeding terms.

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