Page:The Green Bag (1889–1914), Volume 25.pdf/296

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The Editor's Bag same time while unexcelled in breadth of learning and lucidity of statement, he has no doubt been surpassed in attrac tiveness of presentation by some other writers upon international law. After his studies with Christie, Mr. Westlake, who had been graduated from Trinity College, University of Cam bridge, was called to the bar at Lin coln's Inn in 1854. He was made a Q. C. in 1874 and enjoyed a considerable practice about that time before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Coun cil, particularly in appeals from Canada. For twenty years, from 1888 to 1908, he held the chair of Whewell Professor of International Law at Cambridge. He was one of the founders of the Insti tute of International Law and its honor ary president at the time of his death. He was a member of the Hague Perma nent Court of Arbitration from 1900 to 1906. The death of Professor Westlake de prives England of one of the most illus trious members of a small group of jurists of remarkable scholarship and world-wide distinction. He took a deep interest in the promotion of international arbitration, and his influence will doubt less be felt in the United States for a very long time, by reason of the rich legacy he left to the literature of inter national law. BAR

EXAMINATIONS YORK

IN

NEW

IT is to be hoped that the action of the Court of Appeals, in directing a new policy upon the part of the State Board of Bar Examiners of New York, will improve the character of all the examinations held henceforth. The direction issued by the Court April 28 makes sufficiently evident the faults of the system against which criticism

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had been directed by the Judiciary Com mittee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, and by the Asso ciation itself in approving the committee report and in expressing by resolution its disapproval of the methods of the board : — The State Board of Law Examiners is in structed so to frame the questions propounded to candidates for admission to practice as to per mit of a reasoned answer to a question. The board is instructed in that respect to formulate questions, whether based upon decided cases or upon statutes, so as to ascertain the ability of the candidate to apply his knowledge of legal principles and statutory rules and to explain the method of their application by him, rather than to elicit answers the correctness of which will rest upon the candidate's power of memo rization. It is astonishing indeed to find that there has been a situation thus described by the committee: "These questions are avowedly based wholly upon actual decisions of the Court of Appeals or the Appellate Divisions or the former Gen eral Terms, and briefly state the facts set forth in the reports of the cases. The candidate is then asked to give a brief answer as to the point of law pre sented, the question being put for in stance thus : 'All the above facts appear on the trial, judgment for whom and why?' The test of the correctness of the applicant's answer seems to be whether it is in accordance with the decision of the court in the particular case from which the question was de rived." There is something strangely primi tive and sophomoric about such a method of examination. No skill would be required to prepare examination papers on this plan; any clerk capable of extracting the salient facts underlying a decision could frame the questions, and the method suggests the absence of any careful effort to determine the can