Edward Hall Alderson

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My duty is, as a Judge, to be governed by fixed rules and former precedents.

Sir Edward Hall Alderson (baptised 10 September 1787 – 27 January 1857) was an English lawyer and judge whose many judgments on commercial law helped to shape the emerging British capitalism of the Victorian era.

Quotes[edit]

  • This railway is the most absurd scheme that ever entered into the head of a man to conceive. Mr. Stephenson never had a plan — I do not believe he is capable of making one. He is either ignorant or something else which I will not mention. His is a mind perpetually fluctuating between opposite difficulties; he neither knows whether he is to make bridges over roads or rivers, or of one size or another; or to make embankments, or cuttings, or inclined planes, or in what way the thing is to be carried into effect. When you put a question to him upon a difficult point, he resorts to two or three hypothesis, and never comes to a decided conclusion. Is Mr. Stephenson to be the person upon whose faith this Committee is to pass this Bill involving property to the extent of £400,000/£500,000 when he is so ignorant of his profession as to propose to build a bridge not sufficient to carry off the flood water of the river or to permit any of the vessels to pass which of necessity must pass under it.
    • As counsel employed in opposition to the proposed Liverpool & Manchester Railway. On 25th April, 1825, George Stephenson gave evidence to the House of Commons committee looking into the proposed railway.
  • I apprehend that you may put a leading question to an unwilling witness on the examination in chief at the discretion of the Judge; but you may always put a leading question in cross-examination, whether a witness be unwilling or not.
    • Parkin v. Moon (1836), 7 C. & P. 409.
  • Human nature is imperfect.
    • Howard v. Gosset (1844), 6 St. Tr. (N. S.) 365.
  • My duty is, as a Judge, to be governed by fixed rules and former precedents.
    • Brownlow v. Egerton (1854), 23 L. J. Rep. Part 5 (N. S.), Ch. 364.
  • The Courts of law are not provided at the public expense, and were not intended by those who so provided them, for the settlement of any but differences which do arise in the ordinary course of business.
    • Brownlow v. Egerton (1854), 23 L. J. Rep. Part 5 (N. S.), Ch. 365.
  • An active imagination may find a bad tendency arising out of every transaction between imperfect morals.
    • Brownlow v. Egerton (1854), 23 L. J. Rep. Part 5 (N. S.), Ch. 365.
  • It is the privilege of a trader in a free country, in all matters not contrary to law, to regulate his own mode of carrying it on according to his own discretion and choice.
    • Hilton v. Eckersley (1856), 6 Ellis &B. 74.

External links[edit]

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