The Honourable Society of Gray's Inn, secara umum hanya digelarkan Gray's Inn adalah salah satu dari empat Inns of Court di London. Untuk diperintah ke Bar dan mengamalkan sebagai seorang barrister di England dan Wales, seorang seharusnya menjasi ahli salah satu Inn ini. Terletaknya di persimpangan High Holborn dan Gray's Inn Road, Inn adalah sebuah badan profesional dan sebuah tempat tinggal dan penginapan pejabat (bilik) untuk banyak barrister. Ia diperintahkan oleh sebuah majlis pentadbiran yang digelar 'Pension', diperbuat dari Pertuanan Bangku atau 'Pembangku', dan dipimpin oleh Bendahari, yang dipilih untuk mengkhidmatkan satu jangka. Inn digelarkan dengan taman-tamannya, atau Walks, yang telah wujud sejak sekurang-kurangnya 1597.
Gray's Inn tidak mendakwakan suatu tarikh asas khusus; ada suatu tradisi yang tiada dari Inns of Court mendakwa menjadi lebih tua daripada satu sama lain. Kerani undang-undang dan perantis mereka telah ditubuhkan di tapak kini sejak sekurang-kurangnya 1370, dengan rekod-rekod bertarikh dari 1391. Sewaktu abad ke-15 dan ke-16, Inn membesar secara berterusan, mencapai puncaknya sewaktu pemerintahan Elizabeth I. Inn ini adalah tempat kediamannya pada banyak peguambela dan ahli politik penting, yang terkenalnya Francis Bacon, dan mengirakan Elizabeth sendiri sebagai penaung. Bersyukurnya pada usaha-usaha ahli-ahli berpengaruh seperti William Cecil dan Gilbert Gerard Inn ini telah menjadi terbesar dari yang empat mengikut bilangan, dengan ke atas 200 peguambela direkod sebagai para ahli Inn ini. Dewaktu tempoh ini Inn ini menjadi terkenal dengan tarian topengnya dan pesta pora yang ia menentukan, dan William Shakespeare dipercayai telah memberikan pertunjukan di sana sekurang-kurangnya sekali.
Inn ini berlanjut menjadi makmur sewaktu pemerintahan James I (1603—1625) dan permulaan yang padanya Charles, dengan melebihi 100 para pelajar setahun telah direkodkan sebagai memasuki. Letusan Perang Saudara Inggeris Pertama pada 1642 sewaktu pemerintahan Charles I menggangu sistem pendidikan undang-undang dan pentadbiran di Inns of Court, menutupkan semua pemerintahan ke Bar dan kebenaran masuk baru, dan Gray's Inn tidak pernah pulih sepenuhnya. Kekayaan berlanjut merosot selepas Pengembalian Inggeris, yang melihatkan akhirnya kaedah tradisional pada pendidikan undang-undang. Walaupun kini lebih makmur, Gray's Inn masih lagi yang terkecilnya dari keempat-empat Inns of Court.
Gray's Inn, along with the other three Inns of Court, remains one of the only bodies legally allowed to call a barrister to the Bar, allowing him to practise as a barrister in England and Wales. Although the Inn was previously a disciplinary and teaching body, these functions are now shared between the four Inns, with the Bar Standards Board (a division of the General Council of the Bar) acting as a disciplinary body and the Inns of Court and Bar Educational Trust providing education. The Inn remains a collegiate self-governing, non-incorporated association of its members, providing within its precincts library, dining, residential and office accommodation (chambers), along with a chapel. To some extent members of the Bar from other Inns may use these facilities.
Sewaktu kurun ke-12 dan ke-13 undang-undang diajarkan di City of London, secara asas oleh clergy. Sewaktu kurun ke-13 dua peristiwa berlaku yang merosakkan pendidikan undang-undang ini; pertama, sebuah decree oleh Henry III dari England pada 2 Disember 1234 bahawa tiada institut pendidikan undang-undang dapat wujud di City of London, dan keduanya sebuah papal bull yang melarangkan clergy dari mengajar common law, daripada canon law. Oleh itu, sistem pendidikan undang-undang fell apart. Peguam common law menghijrah ke hamlet Holborn, tempat terdekat dengan mahkamah di Dewan Westminster yang berada di luar City.
Penemuan dan tahun-tahun terdahulunyaSunting
Rekod-rekod awal pada keempat-empat Inns of Court telah hilang, dan ia tidak diketahui bila tiap mereka telah didirikan. Rekod-rekod Gray's Inn sendiri kehilangan hingga 1569, dan tarikh tepat penubuhan oleh itu tidak dapat disahkan. Lincoln's Inn mempunyai rekod-rekod kekal terawal. Gray's Inn bertarikh dari sekurang-kurangnya 1370, dan mendapatkan namanya dari Baron Grey dari Wilton, sedangkan Inn telah terdahulunay dinamakan rumah (atau rumah tumpangan) keluarga Wilton, Rumah besar Portpoole. Sebuah pajakan telah diambil untuk pelbagai bahagian rumah tumpangan diamalkan oleh para peguam sebagai penginapan tempat kediaman dan pekerjaan, dan perantis mereka dirumakan dengan mereka. Dari ini tradisi memakan di "commons", kemungkinan memberikan nama utama inn, diikuti sebagai aturan sesuai untuk ahli-ahlinya. Di luar rekod dari 1437 menunjukkan bahawa Gray's Inn telah diduduki oleh socii, atau ahli-ahli sebuah masyarakat pada zaman itu.
Pada 1456 Reginald de Gray, pemilik Rumah besar sendiri, menjual tanah ke suatu kumpulan termasuk Thomas Bryan. Beberapa bulan kemudian ahli-hali lain menandatangani surat ikatan pajakan, memberikan keizinan harta milik hanya kepada Thomas Bryan. Bryan berlagak sebagai sama ada seorang feoffee atau seorang pemilik mewakili badan pentadbiran Inn (adanya sesetengah rekod mencadangkan bahawa dia mungkin telah menjadi seorang Pembangku pada sudut ini) tetapi pada 1493 memindahkan kemilikan oleh carta ke sebuah kumpulan termasuk Sir Robert Brudenell dan Thomas Wodeward, memulangkan kemilikan Inn secara separuh ke keluarga Grey.
Pada 1506 Inn telah secara tetap dipindahkan luar tangan keluarga Gray ke satu kumpulan termasuk Roger Lupton. Ini bukan suatu pembelian bagi pihak Society, dan ia sekali lagi dijual pada 1516 ke Carthusian House of Jesus of Bethlehem, yang tetap menjadi tuan tanah Society hingga 1539, apabila Akta Kedua Pembubaran membawa Pembubaran Biara dan meluluskan kemilikan Inn ke Crown.
Zaman keemasan ElizabethanSunting
Sewaktu pemerintahan Elizabeth I Gray's Inn naik ke kemasyhuran, dan zaman itulah dianggap "zaman keemasan" Inn, dengan Elizabeth berkhidmat sebagai Wanita Penaung. Ini dapat dikesankan semula ke tindakan Nicholas Bacon, William Cecil dan Gilbert Gerard, semua ahli ketara Inn dan konfidantes Elizabeth. Cecil dan Bacon khususnya bersusah payah mencari lelaki muda yang sangat dijanjikan dan mendapatkan mereka untuk memasuki Inn. Pada 1574 ia adalah terbesar dari kesemuanya Inns of Court mengikut bilangan, dengan 120 peguambela, dan pada 1619 melebihi 200 peguambela telah direkodkan sebagai ahli Inn. Gray's Inn, dan juga as well Inns of Court lain, dinyatakan untuk pesta dan perayaan yang ia menuanrumahkan. Para pelajar Inn melakukan tarian topeng dan lakonan di laman perkahwinan, di hadapan Ratu Elizabeth sendiri, dan menuanrumahkan perayaan dan majlis makan di Candlemas, All Hallows Eve dan Easter. Sewaktu Krismas para pelajar memerintah Inn pada hari itu, melantikkan seorang Lord of Misrule dan mengaturkan sebuah tarian topen keseluruhannya sendiri mereka, dengan Pembangku dan ahli-ahli tua lain Inn pergi bercuti. Tarian topeng Gray's Inn pada 1588 dengan keping pusatnya, The Misfortunes of Arthur oleh Thomas Hughes, dianggapkan oleh A.W. Ward sebagai tarian topen paling menarik di mana-mana Inns. William Shakespeare dilakukan di Inn sekurang-kurangnya sekali, sebagai penaungnya, Lord Southampton, was a member.
In this period, the education of a law student lasted approximately twelve to fourteen years. A student would first study at either Oxford or Cambridge University, or at one of the Inns of Chancery, a dedicated legal training institution. If he studied at Oxford or Cambridge he would spend three years working towards a degree, and be admitted to one of the Inns of Court after graduation. If he studied at one of the Inns of Chancery he would do so for one year before seeking admission to the Inn of Court to which his Inn of Chancery was tied — in the case of Gray's Inn, the attached Inns of Chancery were Staple Inn and Barnard's Inn. The student was then considered an "inner barrister", and would study in private, take part in the moots and listen to the readings and other lectures. After between six and nine years of this the student was called to the Bar, assuming he had fulfilled the requirements of having argued twice at moots in one of the Inns of Chancery, twice in the Hall of his Inn of Court and twice in the Inn Library. The new "utter barrister" was then expected to supervise bolts ("arguments" over a single point of law between students and barristers) and moots at his Inn of Court, attend lectures at the Inns of Court and Chancery and teach students. After five years as an "utter" barrister he was allowed to practice in court — after ten years he was made an Ancient.
The period saw the establishment of a regular system of legal education. In the early days of the Inn the quality of legal education had been poor — readings were given infrequently, and the standards for a call to the Bar were weak and varied. During the Elizabethan age readings were given regularly, moots took place daily and barristers who were called to the Bar were expected to play a part in teaching students, resulting in skilled and knowledgeable graduates from the Inn.
Many noted barristers, judges and politicians were members of the Inn during this period, including Gilbert Gerard, Master of the Rolls, Edmund Pelham, Lord Chief Justice of Ireland, and Francis Bacon, who served as Treasurer for eight years, supervising significant changes to the facilities of the Inn and the first proper construction of the gardens and walks for which the Inn is noted. The Inn's prosperity continued relatively uninterrupted through the reign of James I.
Zaman Caroline dan Perang Saudara InggerisSunting
At the start of the Caroline period, when Charles I came to the throne, the Inn continued to prosper. Over 100 students were admitted to the Inn each year, and except during the plague of 1636 the legal education of students continued. Masques continued to be held, including one in 1634 organised by all four Inns that cost £21,000 — £2,624,000 in 2009 terms. Before 1685 the Inn counted as members five dukes, three marquises, twenty nine earls, five viscounts and thirty nine barons, and during that period "none can exhibit a more illustrious list of great men".
Many academics, including William Holdsworth, a man considered to be one of the best legal academics in history, maintain that this period saw a decline in the standard of teaching at the Inns. From 1640 onwards no readings were held, and barristers such as Sir Edward Coke remarked at the time that the quality of education at the Inns of Court had decreased. Holdsworth put this down to three things — the introduction of printed books, the disinclination of students to attend moots and readings and the disinclination of the Benchers and Readers to enforce attendance. With the introduction of printing, written legal texts became more available, reducing the need for students to attend readings and lectures. However, this meant that the students denied themselves the opportunity to query what they had learnt or discuss it in greater detail. Eventually, students now had a way to learn without attending lectures, they began to excuse themselves from lectures, meetings and moots altogether; in the early 17th century they developed a way of deputising other students to do their moots for them. The Benchers and Readers did little to arrest the decline of the practice of lecturers and readings, first because many probably believed (as the students did) that books were an adequate substitute, aand secondly because many were keen to avoid the work of preparing a reading, which cut into their time as practising barristers.
The outbreak of the First English Civil War led to a complete suspension of legal education, and from November 1642 until July 1644 no Pension meetings were held. Only 43 students were admitted during the four years of the war, and none were called to the Bar. Meetings of Pension resumed after the Battle of Marston Moor but the education system remained dormant. Although Readers were appointed, none read, and no moots were held. In 1646 after the end of the war there was an attempt to restore the old system of readings and moots, and in 1647 an order was made that students were required to moot at least once a day. This failed to work, with Readers refusing to read, and the old system of legal education completely died out.
The Caroline period saw a decline in prosperity for Gray's Inn. Although there were many notable members of the Inn, both legal (Sir Dudley Digges, Thomas Bedingfield and Francis Bacon, for example) and non legal (including William Juxon, the Archbishop of Canterbury), the list could not compare to that of the Elizabethan period. Following the English Restoration admissions fell to an average of 57 a year.
Pengembalian Inggeris hingga ke hari iniSunting
The fortunes of Gray's Inn continued to decline after the English Restoration, and by 1719 only 22 students were joining the Inn a year. This fall in numbers was partly because the landed gentry were no longer sending sons who had no intention of becoming barristers to study at the Inn. In 1615 13 students joined the Inn for every one student called to the Bar, but by 1713 this was only 2.3 new members to every 1 call. Over a 50-year period the Civil War and high taxation under William III economically crippled many members of the gentry, meaning that they could not afford to allow their sons to study at the Inns. David Lemmings consider it to have been more serious than that, for two reasons; firstly, Inner Temple and Middle Temple had actually shown an increase in membership following the Restoration, and secondly because Gray's Inn had previously had far more "common" members than the other Inns. The decrease in the number of gentry at the Inn could therefore not completely explain the large drop in members.
In 1733 the requirements for a call to the Bar were significantly revised in a joint meeting between the Benchers of Inner Temple and Gray's Inn, revisions accepted by Lincoln's Inn and Middle Temple, although they were not represented. It is not recorded what these changes were, but after a further discussion in 1762 the Inns adopted a rule that any student with a Master of Arts or Bachelor of Laws degree from the universities of Oxford or Cambridge could be called to the Bar after three years as a student, and any other student could be called after five years. An attempt was made to increase the quality of legal education at Gray's Inn; in 1753 a barrister, Danby Pickering, was employed to lecture there, although this agreement ended in 1761 when he was called to the Bar.
The eighteenth century was not a particularly prosperous time for the Inn or its members, and few notable barristers were members during this period. Some noted members include Sir Thomas Clarke, the Master of the Rolls, Sir James Eyre, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas and Samuel Romilly, a noted law reformer. In 1780 the Inn was involved in the case of R v the Benchers of Gray's Inn, a test of the role of the Inns of Court as the sole authority to call students to the Bar. The case was brought to the Court of King's Bench by William Hart, a student at the Inn, who asked the court (under Lord Mansfield) to order the Inn to call him to the Bar. Mansfield ruled that the Inns of Court were indeed the only organisations able to call students to the Bar, and refused to order the Inns to call Hart.
During the nineteenth century the Inns began to stagnate; little had been changed since the seventeenth century in terms of legal education or practice, except that students were no longer bound to take the Anglican sacrament before their call to the Bar. In 1852 the Council of Legal Education was established by the Inns, and in 1872 a formal examination for the call to the Bar was introduced. Gray's Inn itself suffered more than most; as in the eighteenth century, the fortunes of its members declined, and many barristers who had been called to the Bar at the Inn transferred to others.
Gray's Inn was the smallest of the Inns during the early 20th century, and was noted for its connection to the Northern Circuit. In the Second World War the Inn was badly damaged during the Blitz in 1941, with the Hall, the Chapel, the Library and many other buildings hit and almost destroyed. The rebuilding of much of the Inn took until 1960. In 2008 Gray's Inn became the first Inn to appoint "fellows" — elected businesspeople, legal academics and others, with the intent being to give them a wider perspective and education than the other Inns would offer.
Struktur dan pentadbiranSunting
Gray's Inn's internal records date from 1569, at which point there were four types of member; those who had not yet been called to the Bar, Utter Barristers, Ancients and Readers. Utter Barristers were those who had been called to the Bar but were still studying, Ancients were those who were called to the Bar and were allowed to practise and Readers were those who had been called to the Bar, were allowed to practise and now played a part in educating law students at the Inns of Chancery and at Gray's Inn itself. At the time Gray's Inn was the odd one out amongst the Inns; the others did not recognise Ancients as a degree of barrister and had Benchers roughly corresponding to the Readers used at Gray's Inn (although the positions were not identical).
The Inn is run by Pension, its ultimate governing body. The name is peculiar to Gray's Inn — at Lincoln's Inn the governing body is called the Council, and at the Inner and Middle Temples it is called the Parliament. The name was used for the governing bodies of three of the Inns of Chancery — Barnard's Inn, Clement's Inn and New Inn. In Gray's Inn the Readers, when they existed, were required to attend Pension meetings, and other barristers were at one point welcome to, although only the Readers would be allowed to talk. Pension at Gray's Inn is made up of the Masters of the Bench, and the Inn as a whole is headed by the Treasurer, a senior Bencher. The Treasurer has always been elected, and since 1744 the office has rotated between individuals, with a term of one year.
A Reader was a person literally elected to read — he would be elected to the Pension (council) of Gray's Inn, and would take his place by giving a "reading", or lecture, on a particular legal topic. Two readers would be elected annually by Pension to serve a one-year term. Initially (before the rise of the Benchers) the Readers were the governing body of Gray's Inn, and formed Pension. The earliest certain records of Readers are from the 16th century — although the Inn's records only start at 1569 William Dugdale published a list in his origines juridiciales dating from 1514. S.E. Thorne published a list dating from 1430, but this is entirely conjectural and not based on any official records, only reports of "readings" that took place at Gray's Inn. By 1569 there had certainly been Readers for more than a century.
The English Civil War marked the end of legal education at the Inns, and the class of Readers went into decline. The last Readers were appointed in 1677, and the position of the Readers as heads of the Inn and members of Pension was taken by the Benchers.
A Bencher, Benchsitter or (formally) Master of the Bench, is a member of Pension, the governing body of the Honourable Society of Gray's Inn. The term originally referred to one who sat on the benches in the main hall of the Inn which were used for dining and during moots, and the term originally had no significance. The position of Bencher developed during the 16th century when the Readers, for unknown reasons, decided that some barristers who were not Readers should be afforded the same rights and privileges as those who were, although without a voice in Pension. This was a rare practice and occurred a total of seven times within the sixteenth century, the first being Robert Flynt in 1549. The next was Nicholas Bacon in 1550, then Edward Stanhope in 1580, who was afforded the privilege because, although a skilled attorney, an illness meant he could never fulfil the duties of a Reader.
The practice became more common during the seventeenth century—there were eleven people made Benchers between 1600 and 1630—and in 1614 one of the Benchers appointed was explicitly allowed to be a member of Pension. This became more common, creating a two-rank system in which both Readers and Benchers were members of Pension. However far more Readers were appointed than Benchers—50 between 1600 and 1630—and it appeared that Readers would remain the higher rank despite this change. The English Civil War marked the end of legal education at the Inns, although the government attempted to persuade Readers to continue by threatening them with fines. The class of Readers went into decline and Benchers were called as members of Pension instead. In 1679 there was the first mass-call of Benchers (22 on one occasion, and 15 on another), with the Benchers paying a fine of 100 marks because they refused to read, and modern Benchers pay a "fine" in a continuation of this tradition.
Noted Benchers of Gray's Inn include Lord Birkenhead and Francis Bacon. Honorary Benchers can also be appointed, although they have no role in Pension, such as Lord Denning, who was appointed in 1979, and Winston Churchill. Today there are over 300 Benchers in Gray's Inn, mostly senior barristers and members of the judiciary.
The Badge of Gray's Inn is, in blazon, "Azure an Indian Griffin, proper segreant" or "sable a griffin segreant or" — a gold griffin with a black background. The original badge was the Coat of Arms of the de Grey family slightly altered, but these were changed at some point between 1594 and 1606, with the new arms probably adapted from those of Richard Aungier. This was for two reasons; firstly, he was a particularly important and prestigious member of the Inn, and secondly because the arms looked more impressive on occasions such as masques and revels. The motto around the Badge is Integra Lex Aequi Custos Rectique Magistra Non Habet Affectus Sed Causas Gubernat, or "impartial justice, guardian of equity, mistress of the law, without fear or favour rules men's causes aright".
Bangunan dan tamanSunting
The Inn is located at the intersection of High Holborn and Gray's Inn Road. It started as a single manor house with a hall and chapel, although an additional wing had been added by 1591, when the first point of reference (a map drawn by Ralph Agas) was created. Expansion continued over the next few decades, and by 1586 the Pension had added another two wings around the central court. Around these were several sets of chambers erected by members of the Inn under a leasehold agreement whereby ownership of the buildings would revert to the Inn at the end of the lease. As the Inn grew it became necessary (for safety purposes) to wall off the land owned by the Inn, which had previously been open to everyone. In 1591 the "back field" was walled off, but little more was done until 1608, when under the supervision of Francis Bacon, the Treasurer, more construction work was undertaken, particularly in walling off and improving the gardens and walks. In 1629 it was ordered that an architect supervise any construction and ensure that the new buildings were architecturally similar to the old ones, and the strict enforcement of this rule during the eighteenth century is given as a reason for the uniformity of the buildings at Gray's Inn.
During the late seventeenth century many buildings were demolished, either due to poor repair or to standardise and modernise the buildings at the Inn. Many more were built over the open land surrounding the Inn, although this was controversial at the time; in November 1672 the Privy Council and Charles II himself were petitioned to order that nothing should be built on the open land, and a similar request was sent to the Lord Chancellor in May 1673. From 1672 to 1674 additional buildings were constructed in the Red Lyon Fields by Nicholas Barebone, and members of the Inn attempted to sue him to prevent this. After the lawsuits failed members of the Inn were seen to fight with Barebones' workmen, "wherein several were shrewdly hurt".
In February 1679 a fire broke out on the west side of Coney Court, necessitating the rebuilding of the entire row. Another fire broke out in January 1684 in Coney Court, destroying several buildings including the Library. A third fire in 1687 destroyed a large part of Holborn Court, and when the buildings were rebuilt after these fires they were constructed of brick to be more resistant to fire than the wood and plaster previously used in construction. As a result the domestic Tudor style architecture which had dominated much of the Inn was replaced with more modern styles. Records show that prior to the rebuilding in 1687, the Inn had been "so incommodious" that the "ancients" were forced to work two to a chamber. More of the Inn was rebuild during that period, and between 1669 and 1774 all of the Inn apart from parts of the Hall and Chapel had been rebuilt.
More buildings were constructed during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In 1941 the Inn suffered under The Blitz, which damaged or destroyed much of the Inn, necessitating the repair of many buildings and the construction of more. Today many buildings are let as professional offices for barristers and solicitors with between 265,000 and 275,000 square feet of office space available. There are also approximately 60 residential apartments, rented out to barristers who are members of the Inn. The Inn also contains the Inns of Court School of Law, a joint educational venture between all four Inns of Court where the vocational training for barristers and solicitors is undertaken.
The Hall was part of the original Manor of Portpoole, although it was significantly rebuilt during the reign of Mary I, and again during the reign of Elizabeth, with the rebuilding being finished on 10 November 1559. The rebuilt Hall measured seventy feet in length, thirty-five feet in width and forty-seven feet in height, and remains about the same size today. It has a hammerbeam roof and a raised dais at one end with a grand table on it, where the Benchers and other notables would originally have sat. It also contains a large carved screen at one end covering the entrance to the vestibule; legend says that the screen was given to the Inn by Elizabeth I while she was the Inn's patron, and is carved out of the wood of a Spanish galleon captured from the Spanish Armada. The Hall was lit with the aid of massive windows filled with the Coats of Arms of those members who became Treasurers. The Benchers' table is also said to have been a gift from Elizabeth, and as a result the only public toast in the Inn up until the late nineteenth century was "to the glorious, pious and immortal memory of Queen Elizabeth".
The walls of the Hall are decorated with paintings of noted patrons or members of the Inn, including Nicholas Bacon and Elizabeth I. During the Second World War the Hall was one of those buildings badly damaged during The Blitz. The Treasurers' Arms and paintings had been moved to a place of safety and were not damaged; during the rebuilding after the War they were put back in the Hall, where they remain. The rebuilt hall was designed by Edward Maufe, and was formally opened in 1951 by the Duke of Gloucester.
The Chapel existed in the original manor house used by the Inn, and dates from 1315. In 1625 it was enlarged under the supervision of Eubule Thelwall, but by 1698 it was "very ruinous", and had to be rebuilt. Little is known of the changes, except that the barrister's chambers above the Chapel were removed. The building was again rebuilt in 1893, and remained that way until its destruction during The Blitz in 1941. The Chapel was finally rebuilt in 1960, and the original stained glass windows (which had been removed and taken to a safe location) were restored. The rebuilt Chapel contains "simple furnishings" made of Canadian maple donated by the Canadian Bar Association.
The Inn has had a Chaplain since at least 1400, where a court case is recorded as being brought by the "Chaplain of Greyes Inn". During the sixteenth century the Inn began hiring full-time preachers to staff the Chapel – the first, John Cherke, was appointed in 1576. A radical Puritain in a time of religious conflict, Cherke held his post for only a short time before being replaced by a Thomas Crooke in 1580. After Crooke's death in 1598 Roger Fenton served as preacher, until his replacement by Richard Sibbes, later Master of Catherine Hall, Cambridge, in 1616. Gray's Inn still employs a Preacher for the chapel, currently Roger Holloway, an Anglican who has served in this office since 1997.
The Walks are the gardens within Gray's Inn, and have existed since at least 1597, when records show that Francis Bacon was to be paid £7 for "planting of trees in the walkes". Prior to this the area (known as Green Court) was used as a place to dump waste and rubble, since at the time the Inn was open to any Londoner. In 1587 four Benchers were ordered by the Pension to "consider what charge a brick wall in the fields will draw unto And where the said wall shalbe fittest to be builded", and work on such a wall was completed in 1598, which helped keep out the citizens of London. In 1599 additional trees were planted in the Walks, and stairs up to the Walks were also added. When Francis Bacon became treasurer in 1608 more improvements were made, since he no longer had to seek the approval of the Pension to make changes. In September 1608 a gate was installed on the southern wall, and various gardeners were employed to maintain the Walks. The gardens became commonly used as a place of relaxation, and James Howell wrote in 1621 that "I hold [Gray's Inn Walks] to be the pleasantest place about London, and that there you have the choicest society".
The Walks were well-maintained during the reign of William III, although the Inn's lack of prosperity made more improvements impossible. In 1711 the gardener was ordered not to admit "any women or children into the Walkes", and in 1718 was given permission to physically remove those he found. At the end of the eighteenth century Charles Lamb said that the Walks were "the best gardens of any of the Inns of Court, their aspect being altogether reverend and law-abiding". In 1720 the old gate was replaced by "a pair of handsome iron gates with peers and other proper imbellishments", The nineteenth and twentieth centuries saw few major changes, apart from the introduction of plane trees into the Walks.
The Library of Gray's Inn has existed since at least 1555, when the first mention of it was made in the will of Robert Chaloner, who left some money to buy law books for the Library. The Library was neither a big collection nor a dedicated one; in 1568 it was being housed in a single room in the chambers of Nicholas Bacon, a room that was also used for mooting and to store the deed chest. The collection grew larger over the years as individual Benchers such as Sir John Finch and Sir John Bankes left books or money to buy books in their wills, and the first Librarian was appointed in 1646 after members of the Inn had been found stealing books. In 1669 books were bought by the Inn as an organisation for the first time, and a proper catalogue was drawn up to prevent theft. In 1684 a fire that broke out in Coney Court, where the Library was situated, and destroyed much of the collection. While some books were saved, most of the records prior to 1684 were lost. A "handsome room" was then built to house the Library.
The Library became more important during the eighteenth century; prior to that it had been a small, little-used collection of books. In 1725 it was proposed by the Pension that "a publick Library be sett up and kept open for ye use of ye society", and that more books be purchased. The first order of new books was on 27 June 1729 and consisted of "a collection of Lord Bacon's works". In 1750 the Under-Steward of the Inn made a new catalogue of the books, and in 1789 the Library was moved to a new room between the Hall and the Chapel. In 1840 another two rooms were erected in which to store books, and in 1883 a new Library was constructed with space to store approximately 11,000 books. This was rapidly found to be inadequate, and in 1929 a new Library, known as the Holker Library after the benefactor, Sir John Holker, was opened. The library, although impressive looking, was not particularly impressive; Francis Cowper wrote that:
Though impressive to look at, the new building was something less than a success as a library. The air of spaciousness was produced at the expense of shelf room, and though in the octagon [at the north end] the decorative effect of row upon row of books soaring upwards towards the cornice was considerable, the loftiest were totally inaccessible save to those who could scale the longest and dizziest ladders. Further, the appointments were of such surpassing mag-nificence that no ink-pots were allowed in the room for fear of accidents.
The building did not last very long - damage to the Inn during The Blitz completely destroyed the Library and a large part of its collection, although the rare manuscripts, which had been moved elsewhere, survived. After the destruction of much of the Inn's collection, George VI donated replacements for many lost texts. A prefabricated building in the Walks was used to hold the surviving books while a new Library was constructed, and the new building (designed by Sir Edward Maufe) was opened in 1958. It is similar in size to the old Holker Library, but is more workmanlike and designed to allow for easy access to the books.
Having existed for over 600 years, Gray's Inn has a long list of notable members and honorary members. Even as the smallest of the Inns of Court it has had members who have been particularly noted lawyers and judges, such as Francis Bacon, Baron Slynn, Lord Bingham of Cornhill, Lord Hoffmann and others. Outside the Bar and judiciary of England and Wales, members have included the clergy (including five Archbishops of Canterbury),, industrialists like John Wynne, astronomers such as John Lee, media figures, like Huw Thomas, and members of the Bar and judiciary of other nations, such as Yang Ti-liang (former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Hong Kong) and Aitzaz Ahsan (former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan).
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