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History of Great Britain & Ireland

Case Law Reports

In addition to the legistative enactments of Parliament, the Brown University Library holds a sizeable collection of British case law reports from the 18th and 19th centuries.  

Until 1865, law reports were compiled by individual barristers and separately published under the name of the compiler.  These reports are also known as "nominate reports."   These separate case law reports were later reprinted in a series entitled The English Reports to draw all of the separate case reporters into a single series.  Brown has the volumes of The English Reports that cover Chancery cases.  The Library may also have original volumes of the various nominate reports.  To find titles of the nominate reporters from a case citation or see how the titles of various nominate reports are abbreviated for the purpose of citation, see JustCite's "English Reports reference formats" page.

In 1865, Britain established a comprehensive system for case law reporting under the aegis of the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting.  As of that date, case law reports were printed under the general title Law Reports.   Using BruKnow to search the Library Catalog for Law Reports will produce a list of titles that break the series down by type of case (Admiralty, Chancery, Common Pleas, Ecclesiastical,  Exchequer, Equity, Probate & Divorce), by jurisdiction (Queen's Bench/King's Bench, Privy Council, House of Lords, India, Scotland), and by time period.  Use the facets (found to the left of the search results) to select "Held by Library" to see what Brown has in hardcopy or "Available Online" for digital access.

Other volumes of interest may be found by searching BruKnow.  A few examples are listed below.


U.K. Parliamentary Papers, linked below, is the single best source for material produced by Parliament after 1801.  Parliamentary proceedings and reports printed prior to 1800 will be found in the Early English Books Online and the Eighteenth Century Collections Online databases.