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Decisions of the Superior Courts of New South Wales, 1788-1899

Macqueen v. Lamb [1824] NSWSupC 22

contracts - implied warranty - sale of goods

Supreme Court of New South Wales
Forbes C.J., [1] 13 December 1824
Source: Australian, 16 December 1824

The plaintiff in this case sought to recover the value of a horse, which had been purchased by the defendant, and subsequently returned as unsound.

The principal witness, on the part of the plaintiff, was a clerk to Messrs. Icely and Hindson. Mr. J. Rodd, who had been requested by Captain Lamb, (then in immediate want of a horse) to purchase one of Mr. Macqueen. - To this gentleman he accordingly went, and bargained for a chestnut horse for £45, without any enquiry at the time as to the soundness of the animal, who in two hours after shewed symptoms of lameness. He returned, by desire of Captain Lamb, to enquire of Mr. M. whether he would warrant the horse sound wind and limb - who said he had broken him in himself, and eventually gave him a general warranty. The horse in the course of the day became worse, and he was taken back to Mr. Macqueen's house; he not being at home, the horse, to use the expression of witness, "was hung up at the door;" the servant refusing to take any charge of him.

John Stone, groom to the plaintiff, was called to prove the soundness of the horse; he stated, that when the shoe was removed from the lame foot, the horse recovered, and had never been lame for a moment since. Bad shoeing was the sole cause of it.

Mr. G. Cutter, veterinary surgeon, very minutely examined the animal, in every point considered him perfectly sound; the lameness proceeded entirely from defective shoeing. The horse had never been doctored externally - considered him in every respect perfectly free from blemish - gave a certificate to that effect.

Daniel Morris, a farrier, had always shod Mr. Macqueen's horse, did so, two days previous to the sale - when brought to him after found he was shoe bound; on the shoe being removed, the horse recovered instantly. - Verdict for the plaintiff, £45; the value of the horse; no allowance being made for the horse's keep.


[1] See note on Practice Note, 1824, as to the judge sitting this day

Published by the Division of Law, Macquarie University