Membership of the Society is open to anyone. Our Society includes members of the judiciary, practising lawyers, academic lawyers, historians, students and members of the general public.
The Irish Legal History Society examines, explores and engages with all issues relating to legal history on this island, from earliest times to the present day. Founded in 1988, the Society holds two Discourses annually, as well as publishing scholarly works on a range of legal history subjects. On this website you can see our range of publications, you can find out about our recent and future events, as well as information about joining.
Amidst the celebrations of the 800th Anniversary of Magna Carta a pause for reflection is necessary. A one-day conference at the University of Newcastle will explore how Magna Carta's legacy has been invoked in support of a range of highly contested historical and contemporary constitutional developments.
- How did a feudal bargain between an inept King John and his most powerful subjects come to vested with immense symbolism within the United Kingdom’s legal and political order?
- When the 1215 Magna Carta was quickly repudiated and the reincarnations of the instrument shorn of their more radical provisions, can it support the rule-of-law claims based upon it?
- How did imperial narratives which justified the extension of Magna Carta to colonised peoples as part of the United Kingdom's "civilising mission" come to be reimagined as "exporting British values"?
Attendance is free thanks to funding from the Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal and the Society of Legal Scholars. Attendees are asked to register for the Conference by contacting Kevin Crosby at email@example.com.
Further information is available here.
The latest issue of the Journal of Legal History has just been published:
Constantin Willems, "Coke, Collusion, and Conveyances: Unearthing the Roots of Twyne's Case"
Kellen Funk, "Equity without Chancery: The Fusion of Law and Equity in the Field Code of Civil Procedure, New York 1846–76"
Jonathan Silberstein-Leib, "The Transatlantic Origins of the Business Trust"
Victoria Barnes, "Making Money: Coin, Currency and the Coming of Capitalism"
Click here for further details about this journal.
The following call for papers may be of interest to members:
Law Collecting and Law Collections, 14 and 15 April 2016 (in Edinburgh)
A conference to address the broad topic of the history of law reporting and the collecting of legal decisions, primarily in Scotland but with the development of law reporting situated in its broader British, European and comparative context. The conference is intended to consider subjects such as how the role of precedent developed, in what form were the earliest records of judicial opinions or decisions, how the form of the modern law report emerged, and related issues.
Convenor: Professor John Cairns (University of Edinburgh)
Confirmed keynote speakers include Professor Sir John Baker, Professor John Ford, Professor Thomas Rüfner, and Lord Woolman. The conference will be hosted by the Scottish Council of Law Reporting with the University of Edinburgh.
Proposals for papers (proposals should not be more than 400 words in length) should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 30 September 2015.
The Irish Legal History Society is delighted to support the British Legal History Conference 2015. The conference takes place at the University of Reading from 8-11 July. The theme, in keeping with the ongoing Magna Carta commemorations, is Law: Challenges to Authority and the Recognition of Rights.
The 2015 Autumn Discourse and AGM will take place on Friday 27 November at the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI). The discourse will be delivered by MR Robert Marshall, outgoing President of the Society.
Further details about the event will be published in due course. Information about PRONI can be found here.
The Society was delighted to host Professor Ian MacBride from King's College London for the 2015 Spring Discourse. Professor MacBride's paper, 'Why the history of the penal laws has still to be written' was a thought-provoking analysis of the reasons surrounding the relative dearth of scholarship surrounding the penal laws. The discourse took place at the UCD Sutherland School of Law and was well-attended by members of the Society and others.