Trial of Deacon Brodie

The fourth of the NBT series was TRIAL OF DEACON BRODIE, edited by William Roughhead.

A catalogue issued in 1954 by William Hodge gave the following description of the case:

“The trial of William Brodie for breaking into and robbing the General Excise Office for Scotland took place at Edinburgh on 27th and 28th August, 1788. The story of his strange career is as enthralling as any romance. The double life which he so long and successfully led – as a respected citizen and town councillor by day, and by night the captain of a band of housebreakers – was the wonder of the country at the time. Robert Louis Stevenson owed to him the original conception of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.”

See the full list of cases in the original series at the following webpage:
http://www.notablebritishtrials.co.uk/series1.html

Trial of Eugene Marie Chantrelle

 

The fourth of the NBT series was TRIAL OF EUGENE MARIE CHANTRELLE, edited by A. Duncan Smith.

A catalogue issued in 1954 by William Hodge gave the following description of the case:

“Eugene Marie Chantrelle, a teacher of languages resident in Edinburgh, had become almost penniless through extravagance and debauchery when he insured his wife’s life for £1,000. The policy was so framed as to take effect only in the case of her death by accident. Fifteen months later Mrs Chantrelle died suddenly and her husband tried to make it appear that she had died as a result of an accidental escape of gas in her bedroom. He was arrested and charged with administering poison to her. After four days, Chantrelle was found guilty.”

Trial of Dr Pritchard

The third title in the NBT series was TRIAL OF DR PRITCHARD edited by William Roughead.

A catalogue issued in 1954 by William Hodge gave the following description of the case:

“Dr. Pritchard, a well-known medical practitioner in Glasgow, was charged with the double murder of his wife and mother-in-law by poisoning them. He was found guilty and was executed on 28th July, 1865, this being the last public execution in Scotland. Seldom has a more cruel and crafty miscreant graced the gallows. The sensational evidence of Dr. Paterson, who had seen the victims when alive and believed that they were being poisoned, yet maintained that it would have been contrary to medical etiquette for him to have interfered to save their lives, was one of the features of the trial.”

Trial of the City of Glasgow Bank Directors

The second title in the NBT series was TRIAL OF THE CITY OF GLASGOW BANK DIRECTORS edited by William Wallace.

A catalogue issued in 1954 by William Hodge gave the following description of the case:

“On 1st October, 1878, a sensation was caused in business circles by the stoppage of the City of Glasgow Bank following a resolution of the Directors. Accounts had been deliberately falsified, securities entered at fictitious values, bad debts taken as good assets, and the gold which ought to have been held against the note issue deliberately squandered to the extent of over £300,000. The Government had been deceived by false returns and the shareholders by “cooked” balance sheets.”

See the full list of cases in the original series at the following webpage:
http://www.notablebritishtrials.co.uk/series1.html

Trial of Madeleine Smith

The first title in the NBT series, Trial of Madeleine Smith, appeared in 1905, edited by A. Duncan Smith.

A catalogue issued in 1954 by William Hodge gave the following description of the case:

“Madeleine Smith, the daughter of a well-known and respected citizen of Glasgow, was tried at Edinburgh in June, 1857, for the murder of Pierre Emile L’Angelier. When still young Madeleine made the acquaintance of L’Angelier, who was a clerk in a Glasgow warehouse and much below her in social station. From the first their association was of a clandestine nature; meetings and interviews became frequent, and when these were found impracticable, affectionately worded missives were exchanged. On becoming engaged to a gentleman in her own station of life, Madeleine endeavoured to get back from L’Angelier the compromising letters she had written him, but without success. At her trial, which followed the sudden death of L’Angelier, the case for the Crown was that his death was due to arsenical poisoning, and that on several occasions the accused had supplied L’Angelier with cocoa or coffee poisoned with arsenic.”

See the full list of cases covered in the original series click here.

Welcome to the blog for the official Notable British Trials series

The Notable British Trials began life in September 1905, when the Aberdeen Press and Journal announced the imminent publication of The Trial of Madeleine Smith by William Hodge and Company, the intended first volume of a series entitled Notable Scottish Trials.

Started as a hobby by general editor Harry Hodge, son of the company’s founder, the series was an immediate success and over the next few years several additional volumes were published in the green cloth-bound series.

Hodge’s plans for a parallel series south of the border were realised in 1911 with the publication of Trial of the Stauntons. H. B. Irving’s Trial of Franz Müller was released two months later, and the Notable English Trials series was born.

The two series ran side-by-side in harmony for a decade until 1921, when a new series title – Notable British Trials – was launched, perhaps appropriately with a reprint of A. Duncan Smith’s Trial of Madeleine Smith. The new volumes would be bound in now iconic red cloth which had identified the English trials series.

New titles would be added with great regularity for a further 38 years until, quite suddenly, the series came to an abrupt halt in 1959 with the publication of the eighty-third volume, Trial of August Sangret, edited by Macdonald Critchley.

Welcome to the official Notable British Trials series blog

We are delighted to announce that the official Notable British Trials series, published by William Hodge from 1905-59, has been revived by Mango Books with exclusive permission.

The first of the new series – TRIAL OF ISRAEL LIPSKI edited by M.W. Oldridge – will be published on 18 September 2017.

Other titles currently in preparation are the trials of Louise Massett and Percy Lefroy Mapleton.