Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access

(767 words)

In English law, equity has a meaning that goes beyond the etymological sense of the word (“justness,” “fairness”). Equity is, according to the definition of the English legal historian Frederic William Maitland, “that body of rules administered by our English courts of justice which, were it not for the operation of the Judicature Acts, would be administered only by those courts which would be known as Courts of Equity” [3. 1]. The Courts of Equity and the legal rules they applied came about during the Middle Ages as a corrective to Common law, the case law created by the royal cou…

Cite this page
Henrich, Dieter, “Equity”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 02 March 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_018836>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180126

▲   Back to top   ▲