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The Green Bag

original book have been preserved and new ones added in the way of condensa tion and accuracy. Good judgment has been displayed in not attempting to present every decision of every court, but many of the overruled and obviously weak and erroneous decisions are omitted to make the presentation of important cases more adequate. The volume contains the standing orders, rules of practice, both the statu tory forms and many others evolved from practice, a clear index and a work able system of cross references. On the whole, the work is bound to find sure favor with the profession at large. L. M. F. WILLIAM ALLEN BUTLER'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY A Retrospect of Forty Years (1825-1865). By William Allen Butler. Edited by his daughter, Harriet Allen Butler. With portraits and illustra tions. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Pp. xviii, 388 + 52 (appendix and index). THIS is a charming autobiography, the interest of which is not centered in the many interesting and prominent personalitieswith which theauthor had re lations, and the ease of an unpretentious discourse is doubtless due not more to the conversational fluency with which it was dictated than to a bright mind and a good literary sense. It is not so impres sive an autobiography as the late John Bigelow left, either in care of composi tion or in copious historical disclosure, but it has more of the flavor of old New York, a lighter and more humorous manner, and a homelier and more refreshing simplicity on the intimate and domestic side. For these reasons it will be pronounced neither garrulous nor dull. Mr. Butler was the son of a distin guished lawyer and grew up in a legal atmosphere. He was not so over shadowed by his father's great reputa

tion as not to be an interesting character. Benjamin Franklin Butler was AttorneyGeneral of the United States in two administrations and one of the three authors of the epoch-making revision of the statutes of New York in 1830, which became the groundwork of the statutory systems of many states. Wil liam Allen Butler may at least be said to have compared favorably with his father in legal ability if he did not make so great a name for himself. He was a man of ripe legal scholarship and broad general culture, and achieved high rank at the bar, especially as an admiralty lawyer, but not only in that specialty, his arguments before the state courts and the Supreme Court of the United States being models of sound legal learning, and his ability as an advocate exceptional. His high rank at the bar is sufficiently indicated by the fact that he served at different times as president of the American Bar Association and of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. Aside from the active professional life which supplies an interesting fund of material for reminiscence, and the breadth of experience which gives value to his account of the events leading up to the Civil War, the reputation of Mr. Butler as a writer of light verse lends an additional interest to his personality. The lines "Nothing to Wear," if strange to the present generation, had a great vogue in their time and were even trans lated into several foreign languages. Of Mr. Butler's talents in this direction United States Circuit Judge George C. Holt furnished the following interesting estimate in a memorial address printed as an appendix to this volume: ' . His serious poetry is of a fairly high quality, but his humorous work is that upon which his reputation as a poet will really rest. His light society verse ranks very high in that class of