Reviews of Books
TOWNES' ELEMENTARY LAW Studies in American Elementary Law. By John C. Townes, LL.D., Professor of Law, Univer sity of Texas, author of "Townes on Texas Plead ing," "Townes on Torts," etc. 2d ed. T. H. Flood & Co., Chicago. Pp. xxvii, 626 + 68 (index and appendix). ($4 net.) AWORK of this kind certainly demonstrates the need of analytical text-books, for there is nothing in it to attract a first-year student of law who may have acquired from his general education a scientific habit of mind, and for whom a lucid statement of philoso phic breadth would serve as the easiest mode of preparation for the mysteries of the highly technical discipline upon which he expects to enter. Such a student should not be worried at the outset by a dubious declaration that "there exist absolute principles of right and wrong, which are universal, eternal, immutable, and inexorable, which con stitute the standards by which all human conduct is ultimately to be judged." Nor should he be perplexed by a series of introductory definitions of sovereignty, political powers, and legal rights, mas querading as "general principles of law." His curiosity will not find much light thrown on the nature of law by the vapid definition of it as "an authoritative rule of being or conduct." That the author is learned in American, law is plain, and along the line of a formal tendency long established in American legal education his treatise may well render the service it aims to perform; but such books do not advance the move ment for a more scientific jurisprudence, nor help the coming generation of law yers to a riper understanding of legal institutions than that possessed by their nineteenth century predecessors.
COLLIER'S BANKRUPTCY (9th ed.) The Law and Practice in Bankruptcy under the National Bankruptcy Act of 1898. By William Miller Collier. 4th ed., by William H. Hotchkiss. 9th ed. with amendments of 1903, 1906, and 1910, and with decisions to July 1, 1912, by Frank B. Gilbert, of the Albany bar, editor of Street Rail way Reports Annotated, joint author of Com mercial Papers, etc. Matthew Bender & Co., Albany, N. Y. Pp. lxxvii, 1313 + 107 (appendix) + 93 (index). THE publishers of the new edition of Collier's Bankruptcy are to be congratulated in giving to the bar this latest edition of a standard law book in so practical and convenient form from a book-making point of view. The flexible leather covers, the thin paper and clear type, and intelligent arrange ment of the subject matter must com mend the book to every lawyer who appreciates a comfortable working tool. The previous eight editions of this work have made Collier's Bankruptcy well and favorably known to the Bench and Bar, but the new edition promises an enlarged usefulness for the book. The familiar arrangement of the former editions has been adhered to, of setting forth the Bankruptcy Act by sections in consecutive order with a discussion of the general principles and the decisions thereon. The citation of cases is very full and accurate and covers the decisions in the 27 volumes of the American Bankruptcy Reports, 194 volumes of the Federal Reporter, and 224 volumes of the U. S. Reports. With this vast amount of material and the changes in the law itself by recent amendments the present editor has done well not to attempt a patchwork by merely bringing the old editions down to date. The entire work has been revised by re-writing the text and the notes. All the merits of the