Sep 18 2014
What an interesting thing to do! Harvard Law School has posted all of the law school exams given at Harvard from 1871 to 1998.
Here are the first 10 questions from an 1871 exam in Real Property.
Thanks to the Volokh Conspiracy for the link.
HARVARD LAW SCHOOL.
REAL PROPERTY.— Required.
I. What is real as distinguished from personal property? and what are sometimes one and at times the other? What is meant by estate as applied to land? What are the different kinds of estate ? Give examples of each.
II. From what source is the law of Real Property derived? Can a freehold, except as a remainder, be created in futuro? If not for what reason ?
III. What is an estate in Fee Simple? What word is essential to create such an estate at common law ? What are the incidents of such estate?
IV. What is meant by leases? and to what estates are they usually applied? Were leasehold estates known to and in use under the Feudal law? What is the usual form of leases? by what name are the parties to them called? and what do they usually provide for and contain?
V. How are covenants distinguished from conditions in leases, and what are the purposes of each? What is a lessor’s remedy for breach of covenant if there be no condition in the lease ? What is the form of his remedy if there be a condition?
VI. What is an estate at will? How distinguished from estates from, year to year, and what are such estates? How may they be determined, and when determined what do they become?
VII. Define a tenancy in severalty, a joint tenancy, and a tenancy in common. What are the incidents of joint tenancies and tenancies in common? How may they be severed by act of the parties or by act of law?
VIII. What are the nature and incidents of an estate belonging to a husband and wife? What are the rights of a surviving copartner in the lands held by tbe partnership for partnership purposes? Ist, if there are no creditors ; 2d, if needed for payment of partnership creditors?
IX. To what estates may conditions be annexed, in creating them? and by what words may this be done? What is the effect of a condition subsequent upon the descendible or alienable qualities of the estate? How ere conditions enforced, and by whom? When will equity relieve against forfeiture for breach of condition at common law?
X. What is a mortgage of lands, and how may it be created? What are the rights of the mortgagor and mortgagee in respect to the land, at law, after a breach of the conditions? What, after such breach, are the rights, in equity, of the mortgagor? What is such right called? and in what court is his remedy under the same?