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320 THE CANADIAN HISTORICAL REVIEW The limitations of thebookarethose whichareinescapable in a workwhich does notdiscuss policyandtherefore cannotconvincingly evaluate theefficiency of the administrative machinery.One would have wishedfor more attention to the ColonialOffice's placein thewiderstructure of Britishgovernment: its relationship with Parliament,with the cabinet,with cabinetcommittees, and royal commissions. There is little on the sometimes awkwardco-existence betweenthe officeand the colonialagents-general, the Canadianhigh commissioner ,and the 'specialpublic' which improvedtransportation broughtincreasingly to London.LeonardWhite oncewrotethat an administrative system istheproductof technological capacity, of theexecutive talentofitsgeneration, and the moralclimateof its age.Mr Blakeley hasdealtdefinitively with the firstof these influences, less adequately with thesecond, andhardlyat all with the third. In spiteof theselimitations he hasproduced a studywhichwill be extremely valuablefor all students of Britishcolonial policyin the nineteenth century. D.M.L. FARR CarletonUniversity FredericWilliamMaitland: A Life. c.x-Ls. FIFOOT. Studies in LegalHistory. Cambridge, Mass.,Harvard UniversityPress[Toronto,Saunders], •97x. Pp. xiv, 3x3. $• x.oo. Even at the distanceof three-quarters of a centurythe work of Frederic William Maitland remains,in the wordsof Professor S.F.CI.Milsom, 'a still living authority.'It would be difficult to find anotherhistorianwhosework covered a similarlybroadrangeof topics aboutwhomthe samecouldbe said. Maitland'sscholarship is still with us,aliveand well; indeedit is perhaps in bettershapethan Maitlandhimselfwouldhavewished aftersolonga time. By and largethepassage of timehasincreased Maitland'sstature asa scholar asfurther work revealsthe depthand wisdomof hisjudgments. His workis a constant necessity aswellasa joy andinspiration to everystudent engaged in the studyof thecommon law anda number of relatedfields. Dissenters speak of themselves as'pious heretics' andwritewith sincere apologies andgenuine misgivings, while the numbers of admirers, amongwhomthe authorof this reviewis one,are legion.If all thisand a gooddealmoremaybe saidof Maitland's scholarship, what may be saidof Maitland the man? The latestbiographyby Mr C.H.S. Fifoot seeks to put beforehis reader 'Maitland himself,hisqualitiesof mind and spiritastheseare revealedin his writings,amonghis friends-themselves eminent-and in the midst of his family.'Mr Fifoothasspecifically excluded fromhisbookanysustained assessmentof Maitland'sscholarship, a wisedecision in viewof the judgments on scholarship that occasionally creepin. Thisisthe firstfull-scale biography of Maitland, the onlypossible rival beingthe brief 'biographical sketch' written in •9•o byH.A.L. Fisher,Maitland'sbrother-in-law. Fisher's workwaswritten in the shadow of Maitland's deathandsuffers for this,aswellasbyreason of REVIEWS 321 excessive grief and admiration.Finally,Fifootsees hisbookas'a sketch, howeverslight ,of VictorianEngland.' The firstthingto besaidof thisbookisthat it makes verypleasant reading. It will introduce Maitlandto newgenerations of admirers aswellasrenewand sustainthe affectionof thosewho know something of him already.All the delightfuland familiar stories are here: the marvellous letter to JamesTait after the review of Domesday Book and Beyond,Maitland's review of J.H. Round'sThe Communeo[ London,Maitland'srefusalof the RegiusProfessorship .Maitland is on all accounts an exceedingly agreeable subjectwho has foundin Fifoota mostsympathetic biographer. Moreover,Fifoot,astheeditor of the recenteditionof Maitland'sLetters,isespecially well qualified. Havingsaidthisthereare twopointsworthmakingaboutthisbook.Firstly, thereisverylittle newmaterialwhichthe authorhasincorporated in hislife. The fairly detailed accountof Maitland's ancestors is new and of minor interest.Alsonew is the poignantfew paragraphs whichdescribe Maitland's death.For the centralperiodof hiscareerthereisvirtuallynothingthat will not be familiar to readersof Maitland'sworks,his correspondence, and a few selected memoirs. Secondly, astheworkmakes abundantly dear,Maitlandhad all the qualifications of an 'EminentVictorian': educated at EtonandTrinity CollegeCambridge, a memberof the 'Apostles' (a secretand veryexclusive Cambridge society),president of the Cambridge Union, a favouritepupil of Henry Sidgwick, confidant and literaryexecutor of LeslieStephen, and much more. Yet for all this Maitland does not fit the Victorian mold. He is a modern scholar, narrow,cautious, and modest, sounlikethe brashand slightly gaudy Victorian intellectual.Maitland'slettersreflecthistemperament, theyconcern business mainly.He doesnot ventureuponshows of cleverness or erudition. His feelings are rarelyrevealed andthenalmostexclusively to hisfamily.Nor wasMaitlandin anysense a Victorianfather.Onemayconclude byremarking thatthough Maitlandwastheoutstanding scholar of hisday,hewasaltogether lessan 'EminentVictorian' than Sir Paul Vinogradoff,the Russianernigre•. T.A. SANI•QU•ST Universityo[ Toronto Riding the Storm •956-•959. I-IAROLD MACMILLAN. London and Toronto, Macmillan,•97•. PP.xii, 786,illus.$•4.95. For the Canadianstudentof Englishhistoryin the twentiethcentury,this fourthvolumeof Macmillan's autobiography addslittle to the printedrecord. The indiscriminate detailinterspersed with blandif not banalremarks, all of whichwerepresent in the threeprevious volumes, arestillevidenthere.Only in a few selected passages arereflections madewhichindicatea willingness to reveal incisive observation. When he becameprime ministerin January...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1710-1093
Print ISSN
0008-3755
Pages
pp. 320-321
Launched on MUSE
2016-04-06
Open Access
No
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