The pocket on a barrister’s gown

I must say I believed the story that barristers’ gowns had a pocket on them because they were not allowed to sue for fees and some money could discreetly be put in there by the client. However, it appears that that story was an invention and the pocket (known as a liripipe) is the remnant of a mourning hood assumed on the death of King Charles II in 1685.

See The junior barrister’s gown on Sir Henry Brooke’s site Musings, Memories and Miscellanea.

Translating barristers’ language

The Secret Barrister tries to help a work experience student understand criminal court proceedings at Translating barrister-speak: A beginner’s guide.

For example, ‘My client has had the benefit of robust advice’ translates as ‘I have told the stupid dildo REPEATEDLY how utterly rubber ducked he is’.

Legal cheek decodes what a supervisor says to a supervisee.

For example, the supervisor says ‘I hear what you say’, the supervisee understands ‘He accepts my point of view’, but the supervisor means ‘I entirely disagree and do not want to discuss it further’.

This does ring very true.

Lord Chancellor’s Breakfast 2015

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Who goes to the Lord Chancellor’s Breakfast?

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I did not spot Michael Gove. The justices of the Supreme Court OK, then the High Court judges in partly red dress, the circuit judges in partly lavender. Then come some in black. I suppose some are recorders. Opinions are put forward in the crowd – for example, one man said ‘if they have the long wigs, they are judges, if not, they aren’t yet’. Or do not all judges buy the full-bottomed ones, or recorders not wear them? And who are those in long red robes? and are there mere barristers? Some of the people are what are known as wives.

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At Stanley Ley’s site you can see the full-bottomed wig, the judge’s bench wig, and the barrister’s wig.

Joshua Rozenberg wrote that though 1,000 go to the service, only about half are invited to the breakfast. This explains the more plainly clad persons heading off to the right.

Who are these?

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And these?

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I think there must have been academics there in academic gowns, and also clerics.

LATER NOTE: At gettyimages are some pictures of judges in new robes in October 2008.
Here is a description in words.

The ones with blue bits are district judges – they would not be wearing wigs in open court.

And Wikipedia says:

On special ceremonial occasions (such as the opening of the legal year), QCs wear (in addition to their court coat, waistcoat and silk gown) a long wig, black breeches, silk stockings and buckled shoes, lace cuffs and a lace jabot instead of bands.

I didn’t realize QCs wear long-bottomed wigs. So the ones in the top pictures are QCs.

EVEN LATER NOTE:

There is something about the service on the Westminster Abbey site. They also have a series of photos including one of Michael Gove reading a lesson. But some of the Supreme Court justices weren’t wearing wigs either (they don’t when they’re sitting).

Lang & Rahmann Rechtsanwälte Newsletter

I recently received a newsletter from Lang & Rahmann Rechtsanwälte in Düsseldorf. I don’t know how you can get it, but I suspect you write to newsletter@lang-rahmann.de, which is given as the email address to unsubscribe. But in fact the newsletter consists of links to texts on the firm’s website, so if you go straight to the website you can read summaries of a number of recent cases in German, French and English. One of the lawyers at the firm is Dr. Stephan Kettler, who has published bilingual legal dictionaries and is a certified translator and interpreter for English and French. I use his Wörterbuch Gewerblicher Rechtsschutz und Urheberrecht: Englisch-Deutsch / Deutsch-Englisch, 2011 alongside Uexküll (Wörterbuch der Patent- und Markenpraxis). It’s great to have both.
There must have been more than one person working on the English texts. I did wonder about the translation of Schwarzarbeit as black labour, but then I read recently that consideration has been given to having James Bond played by a black actor, so it must be OK.

I see they use Federal Supreme Court for Bundesgerichtshof, which I’ve commented on before. But they always give the German name the first time around, so that is good. They have, I think, an American touch (Sect., docket) and they capitalize Plaintiff, which is not usual in this kind of text. I was also intrigued by the reference to the preponement of a flight – this is apparently well established in Indian English though. I intend to use it myself whenever I can from now on.

New Secretary of State for Justice

The new Lord Chancellor is Michael Gove. Jack of Kent has a good post with mug shot: A new Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor.

As he writes, we will have to wait and see. He can’t really be any worse than the last one, can he?

But Grayling made things needlessly worse. His grand design for reforming criminal legal aid was unrealistic and botched, and the consultation had to start from scratch. Again and again the High Court found the Ministry of Justice to be acting unlawfully which, if you think of it, is a rather odd thing to happen to this particular department. Scarce departmental resources were used to promote a Bill – an extended press release dubbed the “SARAH Act” – which actually made no change whatsoever to the law of the land. And his personal stubbornness ended up with his spending £72,000 of taxpayers’ money to defend a prison books restriction which the bemused judge regarded as “strange” before quashing it.

It appears that the Human Rights Act is to be repealed pronto. For many myths on human rights and other information, see Adam Wagner’s new site Rights Info. I see that the Daily Mirror says you can live in another EU country if you want to enjoy human rights – thus overlooking the fact that the Council of Europe has 46 members and the EU 28 and that the rights haven’t actually been scrapped, just made harder to get: 13 basic rights you’re going to lose under the new Conservative government

But don’t worry, if you want to keep your absolute human rights, you can still move to the EU.

Or you can stay here and hope for the best.

I’m not sure how to move to the EU.

The Human Rights Act cannot be so easily repealed in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. There’s a useful post on this in the nicely named blog Lallands Peat Worrier:

Thus far, the Tories have had bugger all to say about the detailed devolved implications of their abolition plan — but they are politically explosive. Thus far, by focussing on the court politics of tactics and slogans, the media have singularly failed to take Conservative ministers to task on their woolly human rights thinking. Like Cameron’s pledge to “renegotiate” the European Union treaties without any real or realisable demands, abolition of the Human Rights Act is a slogan — not a worked out policy.

In other election news, Ronnie Carroll won 113 votes despite having represented Britain in the Eurovision Song Contest and being recently deceased.

Bugg’s Lawspeak – legal translation blog

Stuart Bugg is a Barrister & Solicitor (New Zealand), Solicitor (England & Wales), and admitted to Regional Court of Nuremberg (Landgericht Nürnberg). I have had the pleasure of attending his seminar on translating contracts, but I am sorry to say I did not realize he had a blog, which started in January 2014. So here it is:

Bugg’s Lawspeak

I’ve now added it to my RSS feeds. I’m calling it a legal translation blog because it relates to English and German law and translation too.

Amal Clooney fashion disasters

Oh Amal! Mrs. Clooneys 5 Worst Fashion Disasters

(tweeted by John Flood, from Louise Mensch).

Perhaps this follows on from what she is alleged to have said when asked if she would be wearing Versace to the European Court of Human Rights and replied ‘I’m wearing Ede & Ravenscroft’.

Disaster 1:

1) Oh dear! We can’t begin to tell Amal just how much is wrong with this outfit, which she wore this week to the European Court of Human Rights during a trial against a Turkish politician who denied the existence of an Armenian genocide 100 years ago. The solid black colouring of the material, combined with the baggy shapelessness of the whole ensemble… to make matters worse, her gorgeous Lebanese skin tones are washed out by that ghastly white collar and bow. It’s clear that Mrs. Clooney hasn’t got the hang of dressing for the press just yet! Sort your wife out, George!

But I am shocked to discover there is actually a blog about what she wears: Amal Clooney Style.

Meanwhile your blogger has been admiring fleshy buttocks and meaty arms at the Rubens exhibition.

German lawyers fighting in Munich?

Under the heading Exclusive: Two Linklaters partners resign after office party fight
Roll on Friday reports that two partners at Linklaters in Munich have resigned after a fight at an Oktoberfest party.

I’m not sure if this is right because I can still find Laurenz Schmitt on the Linklaters site, but not thomas Elser.

LATER NOTE: Here’s a German report from November. It looks as if just Thomas Elser left, and Linklaters weren’t saying why.