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The House in. Justin Witter,
EXPLANATORY OF THE ALTERATIONS MADE BY THE LATE STATUTE
3 & 4 WM. IV. CAP. 106.
BY JOSHUA WILLIAMS, ESQ.
OF LINCOLN'S INN.
'Law Bookseller and Publisher,
THE AUTHOR'S PREFACE
THE Author of the following pages, when considering the doctrine of Descents, was frequently involved in difficulties which he was not able to remove, or by any means to satisfy himself with respect to, from those Treatises which were expressly dedicated to the investigation of that important subject ; and more especially with regard to the descent of reversions and remainders expectant upon estates of freehold : he therefore found that his sole resource was patiently to turn over the pages of miscellaneous authors, and to collect, out of the profusion of matter scattered through the several volumes he perused, the particular passages which related more immediately to those points ; and, by adding some remarks as he went along, to illustrate what he thought was obscure, or to connect the several passages he selected or referred to, to digest, in some degree, to regular method, the chaotic mass, and form a concatenation through the whole. He pursued the scheme ; and such was the origin of the ensuing sheets. As to the execution of the design, it is not his province to pronounce. All he shall say is, that he hopes the reader will not expect in such collection the ne plus ultra of investigation, or in those observations a professed treatise on the subject; but to remember that they are no other than a collection of a few authorities thrown together with a few remarks, with a design originally to satisfy his own doubts, and not urged by a presumption of being capable of yielding instruction to others. However, from the approbation which some have been pleased to express of them, and in the hope that they may save to others the
trouble which he has experienced, he is influenced to submit them to the public eye; and should they throw any further light on so truly interesting a subject, the Author would feel himself ineffably happy in being in the least instrumental to the elucidation of a doctrine so important and extensive in its consequences.
As these sheets were not designed as a regular treatise on the subject, but merely to assist the Author in his researches, and to have recourse to for the purpose of directing him at once to the several books in which the points he has collected might be found, when the hurry of the moment would not permit him to hunt his subject through volume after volume, he has been frequent in his references ; and has sometimes, perhaps, added observations and allusions which some of his readers may possibly think foreign to his pursuit : but as the intention of the work is thus explained, and as he has found those observations and allusions frequently useful to himself, he imagined that