New Resource: World Constitutions Illustrated

September 2, 2010

The library has recently acquired World Constitutions Illustrated: Contemporary and Historical Documents and  Resources  from Hein Online.

Contains the current and historical constitutions for every country in PDF format.  This site also includes  constitutional histories, texts on constitutional law, links to scholarly articles, and a bibliography of selected constitutional books as well as links to current sources of information for each country. The site is browsable by country or resource.

The resource can be accessed directly from computers on Campus. U of T members using an external Internet address can access the site using their my.access password.

New Title: Index to Legal Periodicals Retrospective

May 17, 2010

Finally, legal researchers can search older journals online using The Index to Legal Periodicals Retrospective.  This new database  provides an index to over 750 legal periodicals from all the major common law jurisdictions including Canada, the UK and the US covering the period from 1908 to 1981. There are links to full text where available including those journals in the HeinOnline

New Title: Selden Society Publications and the History of Early English Law

November 3, 2009

Selden Society Publications and the History of Early English Law

This new resource from Hein Online provides U of T students with access to  huge collection of resources. These resources include searchable PDF versions of  publications from the Selden Society and Harvard’s Ames Foundation as well as the English Reports ( 1220-1694), the Statutes of the Realm (1235-1713), and collections of early English legal classics and scholarly law review articles on the subject.

The Selden Society is a ‘learned society devoted to the history of English Law.” Each year the Society publishes a volume of reprints of  original legal sources; including early law reports, courts’ records, judges’ notebooks, legal treatises, precedent and practice books. The source material is accompanied by a modern English translation. The Ames Foundation, has also published a number of reprints including the Year Books of Richard II and Lex mercatoria.

The collection also includes:

  • Fitzherbert’s Grand Abridgement of the Law
  • Brooke’s Grand Abridgement of the Law
  • Bracton’s Laws of England
  • Hughes Grand Abridgment of the Law
  • Rolle’s Abridgment
  • Cowel’s Interpreter
  • Matthew Hale’s History & Analysis of the Common Law of England
  • Pufendorf’s Law
  • Selden’s Opera Omnia
  • Viner’s Abridgment  & Supplement
  • Blackstone’s Analysis of the Laws of England
  • Blackstone’s Commentaries
  • Comyns’ Digest – First and Second Editions
  • Bacon’s Reading on the Statute of Uses
  • Coke’s Institutes – First through the Fourth Parts
  • Coke’s Reports
  • Joseph Story’s Commentaries on the Conflict of Laws
  • Travers Twiss’ Monumena Juridica, The Black Book of Admiralty

The collection can be accessed from the library catalog at

Making of Modern Law: Trials 1600-1926 Now Available

October 20, 2009

The Library has recently added to its collection of historical legal material with the acquisition of The Making of Modern Law: Trials 1600-1926. The MOML: Trials  is an extensive collection (over 10,000 titles) of cases in the form of official trial transcripts, briefs and arguments as well as unofficial accounts of trials in the popular press and literature.  In addition to including accounts of notorious courtroom dramas,  the collection also includes precedent-setting cases that have a continuing influence on the common law in the United States, the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries.

Why is this collection so important? According to the publisher ” Trial publications may be the best historical source we have for sex, gender, class, marriage and divorce and raise interesting questions about the nature of celebrity and crime within a given era.”

All documents are  searchable and are presented in PDF format. The site can be directly from computers on campus or to the U of T community via my.access

The Making of Modern Law: Trials is a companion to the Making of Modern Law:  Legal Treatises 1800-1926 which includes over the full text of 21,000  casebooks, local practice manuals, form books,works for lay readers, pamphlets, letters and speeches relating to all aspects of Anglo-American Law.

Ontario Regulations from 1944 on the Internet Archive

May 20, 2009

The Bora Laskin Law Library has recently made a significant contribution to historical legal research and to the preservation of historical legal material.

The library has made the Ontario Regulations from 1944 onwards  available for inclusion in the Internet Archives.  Although recent regulations (from 2000)  have been available electronic format on e-laws, this marks first time that the whole set of Regulations has been made freely available in electronic format.

The Internet Archive is an non-profit organization mandated to create a free  digital library of Internet sites  in the form of the WayBackMachine,  as well as  other digital “cultural artifacts” including, moving images, live music, audio, texts, software and educational resources in digital form.

Supreme Court Judgments from 1948 available on the Supreme Court Judgments Website.

May 11, 2009

In honour of the 60th anniversary of Canada’s judicial independence from the U.K., the Supreme Court of Canada and Lexum have published an electronic version of  all the judgments included in the Supreme Court Reports up until 1948 on the Supreme Court of Canada Website .

In addition, appeals from British Columbia and Ontario from 1876 have been added to the site.

The “Advanced Search” feature enables the researcher to search the text of the Supreme Court judgments by full-text keyword or by specific fields including title or case name, citation or docket number, parties,  judges, subjects or date.

Historical Versions of Statutes and Regulations are now on CanLII

March 10, 2009

As of March 5, 2009  CanLII will be providing access to older versions of  federal legislation as well as legislation from  Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec.  Coverage will go back at least 5 years.  Users can compare different versions of a particular statute, find a statute as it was in force on a particular date,  noteup specific sections of a statute, link to cases that have considered that statute or subscribe to an RSS feed which keeps track of changes to a particular statute.  CanLII has plans to add statutes and regulations for the remaining jurisdictions by  the end of the summer of 2009.


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