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The law of bankruptcy is without question one of the most important to the commercial world of any now on the statute books in this country, and it is the one with which lawyers are least familiar. The importance of the law does not rest so much in the relief which insolvent debtors derive from it, as in the fact that it permeates, is interwoven with and affects nearly every other branch of jurisprudence to such an extent that the lawyer cannot safely advise upon the most simple question unless he is familiar with its provisions. This fact was recognized when the present law was approved in 1898, and various efforts were made to provide a work on the subject suitable to the wants of the lawyer. The law, with the exception of perhaps one or two sections, is not complicated, though the text books which have heretofore been prepared make it appear extremely so. The books referred to were prepared hurridly, and embodied about everything ever enacted or enunciated on the subject, with sufficient extraneous “padding" matter to fill that number of pages which law-book publishers deemed essential to the "dignity" of a high priced volume. The incorporation of the enactments that had been repealed, the doctrines that had been over-ruled and the decisions that had been rendered inapplicable by the new act could not be other than confusing. They were prepared before the present act had been construed, and however serviceable they may have been, the writer believes that they have served their purpose, and that the practitioner demands a work of a different type. In the hope of meeting that demand, this volume has been prepared in that manner which it is believed will best enable the lawyer to find the law and carry the thread of a subject through the decisions and every provision of the Act To this end, the Act itself has been made the text of the book, the decisions under all the acts, so far as possible, have been generalized into rules of practice, and connected, upon the same page, with such parts of the act as they in any way affect.
In addition to this, every kindred and relative provision of the Act, the Rules or or General Orders in Bankruptcy, and the Rules in Equity have been connected by cross-references, thereby bringing before the practitioner, wherever he may open the book, the entire field of the law and practice relative to the point he may be investigating. Aside from this, particular attention has been drawn to the decisions under the present act by causing them to be set in bold-faced type, and having them appear in direct connection with the part of the act affected by them, instead of at the end of a section. This is something that has been attempted in no other work; it enables the practitioner at a glance to know, even without reading, whether the courts have passed upon any particular portion of the act. Every effort has been made to state the law in as concise a manner as possible and to avoid such theorizing as might be legitimately indulged in the treatment of older and more complicated subjects. The aim has been to prepare a text book which will most nearly meet the wants of the profession-one that accurately, clearly and concisely states the law and practice, and renders their provisions readily accessible.
TABLE OF CONTENTS.