An Epitome of All the Common & Statute Laws of this Nation, Now in...
by Sheppard, William
1656. A New Departure for the Abridgment Sheppard, William [fl. 1660]. An Epitome of All the Common & Statute Laws of This Nation Now in Force: Wherein More than Fifteen Hundred of the Hardest Words or Terms of the Law are Explained; And All of the Most Useful and Profitable Heads or Titles of the Law by Way of Common Place, Largely, Plainly, and Methodically Handled. With an Alphabetical Table. London: Printed for W. Lee, D. Pakeman [et al.], 1656. [xxiv], 1131,  pp. Folio (11-1/4" x 7-1/2"). Recent period-style quarter morocco over marbled boards, early hand-lettered title to fore-edge of text block, existing front pastedown retained, other endleaves renewed. Moderate toning, somewhat heavier in places, occasional faint dampstaining, light soiling and some edgewear to title page. Owner signature, "Edw: Morgan/ Lincolns Inn" to front pastedown, brief annotations in same hand to title page and a few other places. * First edition. Sheppard's Epitome marked a significant change in the nature of abridgments. Unlike other examples, which are collections of notes of cases and statutes arranged loosely under headings and sub- headings, Sheppard's is comprised of entries on all branches of the law. Dedicated to Oliver Cromwell, the Epitome is divided into 170 chapters and arranged alphabetically from "Acceptance" to "Words." It was inspired, at least in part, to the reforming spirit of the Commonwealth. Notable works that followed Sheppard's example, and went on to inspire the modern legal encyclopedia, are Bacon's Abridgement and Comyn's Digest. English Short-Title Catalogue R10939. (Inventory #: 65336)
Law & Legal History, International Law, Trials, Americana, Criminology, Early Printed Law Books, Legal Ephemera, Manuscripts: Law, Political Science
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