Seven Bagfuls of Stolen Briefs, 1875

Barristers’ brief-bags, as depicted above, were primarily designed for carrying the traditional rolled up briefs tied with a ribbon. They work less well for bound A4 booklets. Today, the bags tend to be used to carry only wigs and gowns, and various miscellaneous but personally essential items varying from barrister to barrister. Image via Ebay.

From the Belfast Telegraph, 28 January 1875, a story which gives a unique insight into everyday life in the Four Courts, and Dublin, in the mid-to-late 19th century. All of human life is here: the barristers with their bagfuls of briefs transitioning back and forth from court, to the Law Library, to their homes, as the need takes them; the transportation service (staffed by women!) available to assist them; the lucrative trade in old waste paper; and the unfailing ingenuity of the Dublin criminal read more