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The Green Bag

originally meant to the county, but only a denotation of each section or para graph in the record, etc." Whether Lord Hardwicke's decision (legal or philological) is to be accepted we will leave to the reader to decide after he has finished reading this article. As we have received little or no en lightenment from the cases, we are justi fied in an examination of the opinions of the eminent writers of legal diction aries and glossaries to learn their opinions on the derivation and history of the two letters. After a rather exhaustive exam ination of the works of such writers we are led to believe that they did not deem the letters worthy a very exhaustive study. Out of a long list we find ss given a place in only six. One of these informs the reader as follows : ' "SS. A mark in a pleading or process indi cating the venue."' Another amplifies and illustrates to a brief extent the same idea and refers to Lord Hardwicke's opinion which we have quoted above. To the philological opinion of the great judge he adds his words of encouragement and belief as follows: 10 "And this opinion is countenanced by the more ancient form of the contraction ff or ff, the latter closely approximating the modern section mark, §. Bracton, indeed, expressly uses ff to denote the sections of the civil law. Bract, fol. 114." The one really important fact found under the letters ss in four of the six writers referred to is the statement that the letters are supposed to be a con traction of scilicet. Assuming then for the present that ss is an abbreviation of the word scilicet our investigation leads us to a study of that word, not forgetting, however, that "Stimson's Law Glossary, tit. "ss." 10 BurriH's Law Diet. tit. "ss."

it will be necessary to substantiate the bare statement of the writers of the dictionaries. Scilicet is a Latin word formed from the two words scire, meaning to know, and licet, meaning it is permitted.11 Put into modern English: namely, that is to say or to vrit.u Scilicet is found in some of the very earliest English reports, those which have come down to us from a time when the Latin language was still the language of the court reports. For example: scilicet is found in the Plea Rolls; Pleas of Michaelmas Term for 1207; the abbreviation scil. in the Plea Rolls, Manor King's Ripton, 1288; the abbreviation sc/i12* in the Plea Rolls, Civil Pleas, Michaelmas Term for 1201; the abbreviation s in the Plea Rolls, Civil Pleas for Lincolnshire Eyre for 1202; scilicet in the Coroner's Rolls of Bedford shire for 1271; scilicet in the Leet Rolls of 1312-1313 u; scilicet in the Coroner's Rolls, Hundred of Redbornestoke, 1270 or 127114; the abbreviation S* in the report of cases in a Term after the Vigil of the Apostles, 1200; scilicet in the Wapentake of Calceworth, Lincolnshire Eyre, 1202; in fact the word or one of its many abbreviations runs all through the reports of that period.15 It may not be too much of a diversion to give here in full a translation of one of these very interesting early cases. The trans lation is that published by the Selden Society of a case which was tried in the Cornish Eyre in 1201 for the Hundred of Powdershire: 16 "The Stanford Diet, of Anglicised Words and Phrases (Fennell's Ed.), tit. "scilicet." Webster's New International Dictionary, tit. "scilicet." An Etymological Diet, of the Eng. Language by Rev. Walter W. Skeat, tit. "videlicet." «A Dictionary of the English Language by Joseph E. Worcester, tit. "scilicet." Bouvier's Institute, Vol. 1, p. liv. The / intersected by a circumflex.—Ed. >' Selden Society Publications, Vol. 5, p. 60. '< Sel. Soc. Pub., Vol. 9, p. 27. » Sel. Soc. Pub., Vols. 1-9. "Sel. Soc. Pub., Vol. 1, p. 2.