Monday 28 November 1836

[, on board the wrote. | Read source notes.]

Monday Nov. 28. Drew up this morning the first sketch of a law for
preventing unnecessary litigation & for the amicable settlement of all
disputes by arbitration. I mentioned the subject to the Governor in London,
& stated my opinion if we could find means to support a court of
arbitration that it would be well to adopt it in Australia. He had never
heard of the Danish practice; but said he liked the suggestion very much
– so much indeed it appears to have taken his fancy that on my reading
the act to him this forenoon, I had the pleasure of being told that he
had determined to introduce the Danish law into the province
long before he knew me!! He said also that he had consulted Lord
Glenelg & Mr Stephen on the subject – both of whom approved of his
intention – the latter especially was “in extasy” at his being “no lawyer”,
& therefore more fitted to make laws without any regard to form
or legality. Mr Stephen, I suspect, must have amused himself with
slyly quizzing the Governor, but I am quite certain that if either
Lord Glenelg or he had ever seriously listened to him for half an
hour they would have pronounced him wholly unfit for the great
trust confided to his hands, The facts I record here however prove the
quality & the moral honesty of the man.

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