The Society aims to bring together scholars, lawyers and the general public interested in Legal History. It sponsors lectures, competitions, research projects and a variety of seminars and discussion groups. Sir Francis Forbes was the first Chief Justice of New South Wales and worked hard to establish the legal framework for the new colony. There are a number of sources for his life including:
C.H. Currey, “Forbes, Sir Francis (1784-1841)”, Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, first published in 1966. Curry’s Sir Francis Forbes; the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales (1968) is a fine study of the colonial chief justice.
One Nineteenth Century account is: David Forbes, Memoir of Sir Francis Forbes, Chief Justice of New South Wales, Sydney: Henry Solomon, 1875.
Oil Painting of Sir Francis Forbes by an unknown artist.
Membership Information and forms for the 2016/2017 year are available in the Membership page in the above list.
Australian Legal History Tutorials
A major activity for the Forbes Society in recent years has been the conduct of tutorials on Australian legal history. Despite a delayed start, the tutorials are continuing again this year. The first tutorial in the series will be delivered by Keith Mason AC QC, who will provide an introduction to Australian legal history on 27 July 2016 at 5.15pm in Banco Court.
Further tutorials will be scheduled at regular intervals throughout the remainder of the year and details of these will be provided shortly.
The Society is dedicated to studying and documenting the history of Australian law and encourages its members to participate actively in its affairs, including in developing any projects that the Society might support. Please don’t hesitate to contact the Secretary of the Society (email@example.com) if you have a project that you wish to bring to the attention of the Society.
The Forbes Lecture – 14 July 2016
The Annual Forbes Lecture is an important event in the Forbes Society calendar. This year’s lecture was delivered by Professor Jane Stapleton on 14 July 2016 at 5.15pm in the NSW Bar Association Common Room.
The Hon Justice Virginia Bell AC chaired the lecture.
Professor Stapleton is a Professor at the Australian National University and the University of Texas, School of Law. She is the Master-Elect of Christ’s College, University of Cambridge.
The title of Professor Stapleton’s lecture was “Lady Margaret Beaufort and the Law”. Lady Margaret Beaufort was the mother of King Henry VII and, among many other things, established Christ’s College, Cambridge in the 1500s. Professor Stapleton’s well attended lecture provided a fascinating insight into this remarkable woman and her relationship with the law.
New Conference: Emotions in Legal Practices: Historical and Modern Attitudes Compared,
Registrations are now open to attend a 2-day international conference, Emotions in Legal Practices: Historical and Modern Attitudes Compared, at The University of Sydney 26-28September 2016.
This interdisciplinary conference aims to stimulate genuine debate and encourage serious reflection on the enduring ‘problem’ of rationality and emotions. Our aim is for scholars and legal practitioners to bring their different disciplinary expertise to reconsider collectively the role of emotions in legal practices both historically and today and, potentially, inform new legal policies.
Further details are available on the Centre for Emotions website: http://www.historyofemotions.org.au/events/emotions-in-legal-practices-historical-and-modern-attitudes-compared/?date=2016-09-27
Registration is free but bookings are essential. Please register at http://alturl.com/zyfjq
Date: 26-28 September 2016 (commencing with a public lecture on the evening of 26 September by Prof. Annalise Acorn, Faculty of Law, University of Alberta, Canada).
Venue: Holme Building Refectory, Science Rd, The University of Sydney, 2006
Conference organisers: Merridee Bailey (The University of Adelaide) and Kimberley-Joy Knight (The University of Sydney)
Enquiries: Jacquie Bennett (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Registration: Registration is free, but essential as places are limited
Confirmed keynote speakers:
- Prof. Annalise Acorn, Faculty of Law, University of Alberta
- Prof. Hila Keren, Southwestern Law School, Los Angeles, USA
- Magistrate Hugh Dillon, Deputy State Coroner, NSW
- Prof. Payam Akhavan (via Skype), McGill University, Montreal, Canada
The 2016 Australian Legal History Essay Competition
Entrants in the 2016 Australian Legal History Essay Competition are invited to address any question of their own choice on “Australian legal history” or to address one of four sample questions proposed by the Society.
Details of the competition categories and submission details as well as the sample questions are available on the following link: 2016 Essay Conditions and Guidelines
Essays submitted by email should be sent to email@example.com
Essays submitted by post should be addressed to: The Secretary, The Francis Society for Australian Legal History, C/- NSW Bar Association, Lower Ground Floor, Selborne Chambers, 174 Phillip Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000. Essays submitted by hand should be delivered to that address.
Judging for the People: A Social History of the Supreme Court in Victoria 1841 – 2016 is an exhibition, conference and supported by a book which all mark 175 Years of the Supreme Court in Victoria.
The conference on 8th - 9th of April and exhibition will bring together stories about the judges of the court, the media’s relationship with the court, the developing role of the court and the rule of law, key court decisions, the changing nature of jurisdictions, legal education, and the buildings and libraries that have featured throughout its history.
Details concerning the Conference and publication are by copying and pasting the following address:
Dr John Hamilton QC’s book, Adjudication on the Gold Fields is to be launched by Bathurst CJ, in the Banco Court, on 8 March 2016 at 5:30 pm.
Invitation to Launch of Adjudication on the Gold Fields
John is a former judge of the Supreme Court of NSW and an active member of both the Francis Forbes Society for Australian Legal History and the Australian and New Zealand Law and History Society.
The Society is pleased to announce the results of the 2015 Essay Competition in the following link. Congratulations to all winners and entrants for the very high standard of entries.
RESULTS NOTIFICATION FOR THE AUSTRALIAN LEGAL HISTORY ESSAY COMPETITION 2015.25.1.16.FINAL
Mark Tedeschi QC, Senior Crown Prosecutor, has built on his previous success with the book Eugenia and continued writing about some significant trials in Australian Legal History with the publication of Kidnapped, the story of the Graeme Thorne kidnapping and death in July 1960. It’s a fascinating story and a landmark case. Further details are available at: ‘Kidnapped’ by Mark Tedeschi QC