Law Library Staff Member Leaves Bride at Altar, 1842

From the Dublin Monitor, 8 August 1842, an interesting account of an action for breach of promise brought by Maria Ormsby, of North Strand, against William Supple, a member of staff in the Law Library:

“Mr P Casserly, for the Plaintiff, said that he need not tell the jury, that a person holding office in the Law Library must, to a certain extent be respectable and no matter how humble in life was the situation of his client, the injuries to her peace of mind and youthful prospects were not read more

Solicitor Delays Discovery to Protect Morals of Lady Typists, 1906

From the Mail, 15 August 1906:


In the Probate and Matrimonial Division, today, in the case of Fitzgerald v Fitzgerald, known as the Waterford matrimonial case, Mr Rice applied on behalf of the male petitioner for an order directing Mr Shannon, the solicitor on the other side, to give the male petitioner copies of certain documents, discovery of which had been obtained so far back as the 25th July last

Mr Shannon said he had some difficulty in giving them read more

Judicial Assassination Attempt at Corner of Leinster Street and Kildare Street Foiled by Observant Pensioner, 1882

From the Kirkaldy Times, 15 November 1882:

A daring attempt was made to assassinate Mr Justice Lawson on Saturday night, in Dublin.  He had an engagement to dine at the King’s Inn and left his house in Fitzwilliam Street for that purpose.  The guard by which the judge has recently been always accompanied consisted of two members of the B division in plain clothes, and two army pensioners also in mufti.  On reaching Leinster Street, the judge kept the house side, and the read more

Apprentice Solicitor Swordfight on Eve of Qualification, 1717

A very early Irish legal story, from Pue’s Occurrences, 31 January 1719:  

“About 3 quarters after 2 in the Afternoon, Mr Leigh, eldest Son of Richard Leigh Esq of the County of Westmeath, and one Mr Smith, Son to Mr Smith, at the Sun near Smithfield (who served his Time to an Attorney, and was to be Sworn an Attorney next day) Fought in the Tholsel of this City.  Mr Leigh was run into the Left Breast and died in a Minute after.  The same Night the Coroner’s Inquest read more

Bomb Outrages in the Four Courts, 1893

From the Globe, 7 May 1893:

“At about 20 minutes to 11 o’clock at night a serious explosion occurred at the Four Courts, Dublin.  The substance, whatever it may have been, and it is generally believed to have been glycerine encased in a metallic vessel, was evidently thrown by some person passing along the quay, who carefully selected the time, and kept a close watch on the movements of the police.”

The scene of the explosion, visited the following day by thousands of people. was the read more

A Stolen Judicial Lunch Goes Viral, 1912

From the Derry Journal, 21 February 1912:


Luncheon was spread in his private chamber in the Four Courts, Dublin, for Judge Kenny, when, about 1.30 p.m., a tramp entered and lost no time in helping himself to his lordship’s meal.

The Judge’s attendant on entering found this audacious visitor in the act of pouring out a cup of tea for himself.  The attendant promptly seized him, and brought him out into the passage adjoining the chamber, leaving the culprit read more

Ballymoney Barrister Treats Servants as Guests, 1913

From the Jarrow Express, 21 July 1913:

A remarkable defence was made in a case in which Mr Robert Cramsie, barrister-at-law, of Ballymoney, Co Antrim, was prosecuted before the local magistrates by the Irish Insurance Commissioners for failing to pay the contributions under the National Insurance Act in respect of three employees. The defence was that the latter were not servants, but guests living in his house.

Maria Crawford said that she had been kitchen-maid for four years, but was read more

From ‘Back Hair’ to Go-Go Boots: Fashion and the Female Barrister, 1921-1967

From the Belfast News-Letter, 21 January 1922, this account of an interview with Frances Kyle, Ireland’s (technically) first woman barrister, having been called a couple of minutes or so before her colleague Averil Deverell:

“‘How do you like the wig,’ I asked as the short winter afternoon closed in, and we rose to say ‘good-bye.’ ‘Oh, not at all,’ said Miss Kyle, ‘It is so hot and heavy, and both Miss Deverell and I fought against wearing it, and petitioned the Lord read more

Irish Solicitor Efficiently Rescued After Falling Off Dublin-Holyhead Ferry mid-Channel, 1932

From the Belfast Telegraph, 26 October 1932:

Passengers on the RMS Scotia from Dun Laoghaire (Kingstown) to Holyhead on Tuesday night witnessed the rescue of an Irish solicitor, Mr O’Connor.  It appears that somewhere about mid-channel he fell overboard.  The ship was stopped and one of the lifeboats lowered, and after a time Mr O’Connor was got safely into the lifeboat.  After the lifeboat was hoisted up the vessel proceeded on her way to Holyhead.

The Scotia was travelling read more

Hot, and More Often Not: Calibrating the Four Courts, 1796-1922