336), and he admits (see page 360) that the acceptance cannot be effectual as a promise until it reaches the offerer.
As the phrase “implied promise” is used to designate, 1. A class of cases where there is in fact a contract, the promise being established by conduct rather than the language of promise. 2. A class of cases where there is no contract, but where, on principles of enrichment, i. e., to prevent one from unjustly profiting at the expense of another, the law imposes an obligation, and gives the remedy of general assumpsit,—it is to be regretted that one so well acquainted with the distinction did not separate the cases in his treatment of them, and use the phrase quasi ex contractu as to the latter.
The want of space prevents our referring at length to the remaining chapters of the book. The author has, however, treated the topics included in those chapters, as he has those to which we have more especially referred, with great care and thoughtfulness, and it is to be hoped that he will increase the obligation which the profession is under to him for his present publication by writing a treatise on those topics of the law of contracts not embraced in the present volume.
W. A. K.
The Law of Torts: A Treatise on the Principles of Obligations arising from Civil Wrongs in the Common Law. By Frederick Pollock. London: Stevens & Sons; Boston: Charles C. Soule. Octavo, ix. and 515 pages.
Mr. Pollock is well known in this country as the editor of the Law Quarterly Review, and the author of a treatise on the Principles of Contract. One great merit of the book he has just given us is its brevity and clearness. The principles of the law of torts are here stated in a form easy to read and to understand, and for that reason this work will probably become a favorite with students. The book contains several novel features. Leading American cases are frequently cited in the notes and referred to in the text, and have evidently had weight in the statement of several important principles. The references to the lex aquilia are interesting, and justify the author’s assertion that this title of the Digest deserves more attention at the hands of English lawyers than it has ever received.
The general scope and object of the work are thus stated in the preface: “The purpose of this book is to show that there really is a Law of Torts, not merely a number of rules of law about various kinds of torts—that this is a true living branch of the Common Law, not a collection of heterogeneous instances.” In carrying out this purpose the author has divided his work into two parts, the first being a discussion and review of the general principles common to the whole subject, viz., the grounds of liability, exceptions from liability, and remedies. The second part is devoted to the several distinct kinds of actionable wrongs. In this branch of the subject there is less scope for theory and general discussion than in the first. It is tied down by the old common-law forms of action, and to be complete should include a large amount of historical matter, explaining the origin and use of those forms of action, as well as a statement of the principles now established and acted upon as law. If, for example, some author should show clearly the origin of the action of trover, and trace minutely the successive steps by which it practically swallowed up the