The Stair Society: Scotland’s Legal History Society

Alexander King’s Treatise on Maritime Law

Stair Society Volume 65

Professor J. D. Ford has transcribed and translated the six surviving manuscript copies of Alexander King’s Treatise on Maritime Law. He also offers a comprehensive introduction to King’s life, times, and relationships which places his treatise in the context needed to understand it fully.

Unlike William Welwood’s better known Sea-Law of Scotland, King’s work was never printed. Because its only copies are in Latin – and in early modern handwriting – it has been neglected. However, it is an important resource for tracing the mercantile and maritime law in early modern Scotland. King was a judge with experience in the admiralty court and wrote his treatise based on his observations.

King’s original draft has been lost but six copies from the late seventeenth century survive and Ford has used these to re-create King’s text.

This volume provides the full text of King’s treatise in Latin and a translation into English. Ford’s Commentary explores the sources King used to create his account of Scots maritime law.

Edited and translated, with an Introduction and Commentary by J. D. Ford

Published 2018

All volumes are available from the Avizandum Law Bookshop