revenue might thus be entirely discharged 
from a certain, though perhaps but a small 
incumbrance. It is difficult to regulate the 
fees of court effectually, where a person so 
powerful as the sovereign is to share in them, 
and to derive any considerable part of his revenue 
from them. It is very easy, where the 
judge is the principal person who can reap any 
benefit from them. The law can very easily 
oblige the judge to respect the regulation, 
though it might not always be able to make 
the sovereign respect it. Where the fees of 
court are precisely regulated and ascertained; 
where they are paid all at once, at a certain 
period of every process, into the hands of a 
cashier or receiver, to be by him distributed 
in certain known proportions among the 
different judges after the process is decided
and not till it is decided; there seems to be 
no more danger of corruption than where 
such fees are prohibited altogether. Those 
fees, without occasioning any considerable 
increase in the expense of a law-suit, might 
be rendered fully sufficient for defraying the 
whole expense of justice. But not being 
paid to the judges till the process was determined, 
they might be some incitement to the 
diligence of the court in examining and deciding 
it. In courts which consisted of a 
considerable number of judges, by proportioning 
the share of each judge to the number 
of hours and days which he had employed in 
examining the process, either in the court, or 
in a committee, by order of the court, those 
fees might give some encouragement to the 
diligence of each particular judge. Public 
services are never better performed, than 
when their reward comes only in consequence 
of their being performed, and is proportioned 
to the diligence employed in performing 
them. In the different parliaments of 
France, the fees of court (called epices and 
vacations) constitute the far greater part of 
the emoluments of the judges. After all 
deductions are made, the neat salary paid by 
the crown to a counsellor or judge in the 
parliament of Thoulouse, in rank and dignity 
the second parliament of the kingdom, 
amounts only to 150 livres, about L.6. 11s. 
sterling a-year. About seven years ago, that 
sum was in the same place the ordinary yearly 
wages of a common footman. The distribution 
of these epices, too, is according to the 
diligence of the judges. A diligent judge 
gains a comfortable, though moderate revenue
by his office; an idle one gets little 
more than his salary. Those parliaments 
are, perhaps, in many respects, not very convenient 
courts of justice, but they have 
never been accused; they seem never even to 
have been suspected of corruption
The fees of court seem originally to have 
been the principal support of the different 
courts of justice in England. Each court 
endeavoured to draw to itself as much business 
as it could, and was, upon that account, 
willing to take cognizance of many suits 
which were not originally intended to fall 
under its jurisdiction. The court of king's 
bench, instituted for the trial of criminal 
causes only, took cognizance of civil suits
the plaintiff pretending that the defendant, in 
not doing him justice, had been guilty of 
some trespass or misdemeanour. The court 
of exchequer, instituted for the levying of the 
king's revenue, and for enforcing the payment 
of such debts only as were due to the 
king, took cognizance of all other contract 
debts; the plaintiff alleging that he could not 
pay the king, because the defendant would 
not pay him. In consequence of such fictions
it came, in many cases, to depend altogether 
upon the parties, before what court 
they would choose to have their cause tried, 
and each court endeavoured, by superior dispatch 
and impartiality, to draw to itself as 
many causes as it could. The present admirable 
constitution of the courts of justice 
in England was, perhaps, originally, in a 
great measure, formed by this emulation
which anciently took place between their respective 
judges; each judge endeavouring to 
give, in his own court, the speediest and 
most effectual remedy which the law would 
admit, for every sort of injustice. Originally
the courts of law gave damages only 
for breach of contract. The court of chancery
as a court of conscience, first took upon 
it to enforce the specific performance of 
agreements. When the breach of contract 
consisted in the non-payment of money, the 
damage sustained could be compensated in 
no other way than by ordering payment, 
which was equivalent to a specific performance 
of the agreement. In such cases
therefore, the remedy of the courts of law 
was sufficient. It was not so in others. 
When the tenant sued his lord for having 
unjustly outed him of his lease, the damages 
which he recovered were by no means equivalent 
to the possession of the land. Such 
causes, therefore, for some time, went all to 
the court of chancery, to the no small loss of 
the courts of law. It was to draw back such 
causes to themselves, that the courts of law 
are said to have invented the artificial and 
fictitious writ of ejectment, the most effectual 
remedy for an unjust outer or dispossession 
of land
A stamp-duty upon the law proceedings 
by each particular court, to be levied by that 
court, and applied towards the maintenance 
of the judges, and other officers belonging to 
it, might in the same manner, afford a revenue 
sufficient for defraying the expense of 
the administration of justice, without bringing 
any burden upon the general revenue of 
the society. The judges, indeed, might in 
this case, be under the temptation of multiplying 
unnecessarily the proceedings upon