The Selden Society


                                                                                    May, 2005




Dear Member,


            Once again it is time for us to request payment of your annual dues.  As last year’s dues notice warned and as was reported on our web site, the Annual General Meeting on 19 July, 2004 approved a proposal of the Council that dues be increased.  The old rates had been effect since 1991, and costs have increased substantially since then.  The dues for 2005 are $65.00 for individuals and $90.00 for institutions.


            Your prompt payment will be very much appreciated.  If you are paying with a check that does not contain your name, could you please write your name on it or include your name on a separate piece of paper within the envelope?  (Institutions should include a copy of the invoice form.)  This will save us much time here.


            The volumes for 2005 and 2006 will be continuations of the earliest year book reports (prior to 1300) by Dr. Paul Brand.  Dr. Brand’s discovery of a number of previously unpublished year book reports from the reign of Edward I is an important event in the history of our discipline.  The two volumes of these reports that appeared in volume 111 and 112 have already substantially increased our knowledge of the developments in this important reign, and we look forward to the continuation.


            Volume 121 (for 2004), an edition of previously unprinted reports from the years 1509–1550 by Professor J. H. Baker, was mailed to all members paid up for 2004 at the end of last year.  This completes Professor Baker’s current undertakings with respect to the early Tudor law reports, publications that, it is fair to say, have totally revised our understanding of what happened during these crucial years.


            Dr. Brand’s volumes will probably be followed in 2007 by Mr. Le Poidevin’s edition of Bryt’s Reports (a named Year Book reporter of the early fifteenth century).  Further along in the pipeline are a proposed edition of William Staunford’s Plees del Coron (1557) and an edition of the papers of Sir Matthew Hale’s law reform commission of the 1550’s.


            The Supplementary Series will soon be recontinued with works that are nearing completion.  The Letters of Sir William Blackstone, edited by Professor W. R. Prest is about to go to print.  Other volumes in the pipeline include Dr. David Crook’s The King’s Bench and Common Bench in the Reign of Henry III and Dr. A. Lyall’s edition of Cases in the Irish Court of Exchequer, 1716–34.


            The main series of Selden volumes is entirely in print.  Volumes 1–99 have been reprinted by W. S. Hein & Co., Inc., 1285 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14209–1987 (phone: [800]828–7571; FAX: [716]883–8100; email:; website:  The cost is $95 per volume, with a twenty percent discount for Selden members, plus dispatch costs.  Volume 100 and forward can, as before, be obtained from the Secretary, Victor Tunkel, Selden Society, Faculty of Laws, Queen Mary and Westfield College, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS, U.K. (phone: 44 20 7882 5136; FAX: 44 20 8981 8733; email:


            Last year Hein, with the Society’s permission, issued a volume reproducing the whole of the Society’s lecture series from 1952–2001.  The volume has over 700 pages and is case bound in maroon cloth similar to that of the Supplementary Series.  Many of the past lectures have been out of print for some years, and the Council hope that members and especially libraries will want to complete their holdings.  The volume is offered to members at a special price of $120 inclusive of all dispatch costs.  A leaflet with order form will be sent to members in a forthcoming dispatch.


            Hein has also reprinted the four volumes of Professor Thorne’s edition of Bracton on the Laws and Customs of England.  The price is $395, with a discount to Selden members of twenty percent, plus dispatch costs.  Simultaneously, the Ames Foundation, the Harvard Law School Library, and the Legal Information Institute of the Cornell Law School have produced a fully-searchable “on-line” version of both the Latin and the English text of Bracton.  It is available on the “world-wide web” at:


   (please note the change in this URL)


            The Ames Foundation, which, as many Selden members know, is an organization similar to Selden, though its publications are more irregular, has recently entered into a distribution agreement with Hein & Co.  Hein has the stock of Ames back volumes and has reprinted those volumes that are out of print.  Hein has also agreed to give discounts on Ames volumes to Selden members similar to those that Ames has offered in the past.


            We call your attention to the “web page” for the Selden Society.  This contains a complete list of Selden publications and other information that we hope will be useful.  It is available on the “world-wide web” at:




Links may found on this page to Selden’s London web page.  A similar “web page” for the Ames Foundation is available at:




            Members will receive the announcement of the Society’s Annual General Meeting which will be held in conjunction with the British Legal History Conference at University College London on Monday, 4 July, at 5:30 p.m.  It will be preceded by tea at 4:30 and followed by a lecture by the Society’s Literary Director Professor Sir John Baker QC FBA, on “Legal Education in London 1250–1850.”  Members need not be attending the Conference in order to come to the tea, the meeting, and the lecture.  Further information may be obtained from the Secretary at the addresses listed above.



                                                                              Yours sincerely,


                                                                              Charles Donahue, Jr.


                                                                              David Warrington



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