Arthur Kekewich

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It is the right of her Majesty's subjects to make claims and to have them tried in the constitutional way.

Sir Arthur Kekewich (26 July 1832 – 22 November 1907) was a British High Court judge.


  • Public policy does not admit of definition and is not easily explained. It is a variable quantity; it must vary and does vary with the habits, capacities, and opportunities of the public.
    • Davies v. Davies (1887), L. R. 36 C. D. 364; see also Egerton v. Earl Brownlow, 4 H. L. C. 1.
  • It is to my mind much to be regretted, and it is a regret which I believe every Judge on the bench shares, that text-books are more and more quoted in Court—I mean, of course, text-books by living authors—and some Judges have gone so far as to say that they shall not be quoted.
    • Union Bank v. Munster (1887), L. R. 37 CD. 54.
  • This seems to me to be one of those cases in which the Court is bound to arrive at a conclusion without having any satisfactory means of arriving at it. The only guide I have is this. I am entitled to sit in the testator's chair as he wrote his own will.
    • Horlock v. Wiggins (1888), L. R. 39 C. D. 143.
  • I think that the proper and safe course is to follow a decision of a Court of co-ordinate jurisdiction, unless some cogent reason is given to the contrary.
    • Evans v. Manchester, &c. Rail. Co. (1887), L. J. (N. S.) 57 C. D. 157.
  • It is the right of her Majesty's subjects to make claims and to have them tried in the constitutional way.
    • Birmingham and District Land Co. v. London and North-Western Railway Co. (1888), 57 L. J. Rep. (N. S.) C. D. 123.
  • Motives do not concern me; they are a dangerous subject with which to deal.
    • Whelan v. Palmer (1888), L. J. Rep. (N. S.) 57 C. D. 788.
  • The difficulty which I feel as a Judge, and always felt at the Bar, is this: a defendant is entitled to put his back against the wall and to fight from every available point of advantage.
    • Blank v. Footman & Co. (1888), 57 L. J. (N. S.) C. D. 914.
  • I am always afraid of quoting my own decisions; I do not think it is the right thing for a judge to do, but I often do refer to them when I can thereby avoid repeating in different words what I have said before.
    • Bolton Partners v. Lambert (1889), L. R. 41 C. D. 300.
  • A decision of the House of Lords requires no sanction.
    • In re Weall Andrews v. Weall (1889), L. R. 42 Ch. D. 679.
  • Masterly inactivity may be prudence to one man, desperate rashness to another.
    • In re Liverpool Household Stores Assoc. (1890), 59 L. J. Rep. C. D. 618.
  • Born and bred, so to say, in Chancery, I have a strong leaning towards the rule of the Court of Chancery, of requiring full discovery.
    • Ashworth v. Roberts (1890), L. J. Rep. (N. S.) 60 C. D. 28.
  • I have said frequently, and I repeat it, that there is no Judge on the bench who is more willing to allow amendments, even at the last moment, than I, provided there is no surprise.
    • James v. Smith (1890), L. R. 1 C. D. [1891], p. 389.
  • It is impossible for us English lawyers, dealing with the English language, to express our views except in the technical language of our law.
    • Lauri v. Renad (1892), L. R. 3 C. D. [1892], p. 413.
  • I wish to uphold counsel in the exercise of their discretion.
    • In re Somerset; Somerset v. Earl Poulett (1893), L. R. [1894], 1 Ch. 249.
  • I must look at the decision with reference to all the circumstances which led to it.
    • In re England (1895), L. R. 2 C. D. [1895], p. 109.
  • Any man who spends his income, whether large or small, benefits the community by putting money in circulation.
    • In re Nottage (1895), L. R. 2 C. D. [1895], p. 653.
  • Experience tells us that sometimes, when minorities insist on their rights, they ultimately prevail.
    • Young v. South African, &c. Syndicate (1896), L. R. 2 C. D. [1896], p. 278.
  • I do not think I can pass over the distinct words of Sir George Jessel, who knew practice as thoroughly as any Judge who ever sat on the bench.
    • Woolf v. Woolf (1898), L. R. 1 C. D. 347.
  • Decisions in the American Courts are entitled to great respect, but are not binding here; and there are many circumstances affecting questions arising between the laws of different States which may or may not be applicable to questions arising here.
    • In re De Nicols. De Nicols v. Curlieb (1898), L. R. 1 C. D. [1898], p. 410.

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