Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Locke, John (1805-1880)

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707707Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 34 — Locke, John (1805-1880)1893John Andrew Hamilton

LOCKE, JOHN (1805–1880), legal writer and politician, born in London in 1805, was only son of John Locke, surveyor, of Herne Hill, Surrey, by his wife Alice, daughter of W. Cartwright. He was educated at Dulwich College and at Trinity College, Cambridge, graduating B.A. in 1829 and M.A. in 1832. He was called to the bar at the Inner Temple in Easter term 1833, and became a bencher of his inn in 1857. He joined the home circuit and Surrey sessions, where he enjoyed a leading practice, and from 1845 to 1857 was one of the common pleaders of the city of London. In June 1857, having ceased to practise for some years, except as counsel to the commissioners of inland revenue, he was appointed a queen's counsel, and in 1861 became recorder of Brighton, an office which he held until 1879. Having unsuccessfully contested Hastings as a liberal in 1852, he was elected for Southwark in April 1857, and held the seat till his death. In parliament he chiefly exerted himself upon questions of local government and measures for improving the condition of the working classes. He introduced and passed a bill in 1861 for the admission of witnesses in criminal cases to the same right of substituting an affirmation for an oath as in civil cases. He died at 63 Eaton Place, London, on 28 Jan. 1880. He married in 1847 Laura Rosalie, daughter of Colonel Thomas Alexander Cobb of the East India Company's army. He was the author of a 'Treatise on the Game Laws,' published in 1849, and another on 'The Doctrine and Practice of Foreign Attachment in the Lord Mayor's Court,' published in 1853.

[Solicitors' Journal, 7 Feb. 1880; Law Times, 14 Feb. 1880; Times, 30 Jan. 1880; Ann. Reg. 1880. For a description of his manner see Ballantine's Experiences, i. 66.]

J. A. H.