Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Phillipps, Samuel March

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PHILLIPPS, SAMUEL MARCH (1780–1862), legal writer, second son of Thomas March of More Crichel, Dorset, was born at Uttoxeter on 14 July 1780. His father assumed the additional surname of Phillipps on succeeding in 1796 to the estate of Garendon Park, Leicestershire, under the will of his cousin, Samuel Phillipps. His mother was Susan, fourteenth daughter of Edward Lisle of Crux-Easton, Hampshire. He was educated at the Charterhouse and Sidney-Sussex College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A., being eighth wrangler and chancellor's medallist, in 1802, and proceeded M.A. in 1805. He was called to the bar at the Inner Temple in 1806, but did not practise. His leisure he devoted to researches in the law of evidence and the state trials. In 1827 he accepted the post of permanent under-secretary for home affairs, which he held until 1848, when he retired, and was sworn of the privy council. He died at Great Malvern on 11 March 1862.

Phillipps married, on 16 Oct. 1812, Charemelle (d. 1825), second daughter of Charles Grant, and sister of Charles Grant, lord Glenelg [q. v.], by whom he had issue two sons.

Phillipps takes high rank among legal authors by his ‘Treatise on the Law of Evidence,’ London, 1814, 8vo, which, though now superseded, was in its day a standard text-book both in England and America. The eighth and last English edition, in the preparation of which he was assisted by Andrew Amos, appeared at London in 1838, 2 vols. 8vo. The fifth American edition was published at New York in 1868, 3 vols. 8vo. In 1826 he edited ‘State Trials; or a Collection of the most interesting Trials prior to the Revolution of 1688,’ London, 2 vols. 8vo.

[Nichols's Leicestershire, iii. 804, 1143; Hutchins's Dorset, ed. 1808, iii. 131; Burke's Landed Gentry, ‘Le Lisle;’ Grad. Cantabr.; Cambridge University Calendar, 1802; Gent. Mag. 1812 pt. ii. p. 390, 1825 pt. ii. p. 572, 1862 pt. i. p. 520; Ann. Reg. 1862, App. to Chron. p. 392; Law Times, 29 March 1862; Haydn's Book of Dignities, ed. Ockerby; Marvin's Legal Bibliography.]

J. M. R.