Albert Hochster v Edgar Frederick De la Tour

JurisdictionEngland & Wales
Judgment Date25 June 1853
Date25 June 1853
CourtCourt of the Queen's Bench

English Reports Citation: 118 E.R. 922

COURTS OF QUEENS BENCH AND THE COURT OF EXCHEQUER CHAMBER.

Albert Hochster against Edgar Frederick De la Tour

S. C. 22 L. J. Q. B. 455; 17 Jur. 972; 1 W. R. 469. See Roberts v. Brett, 1859-65, 6 C. B. N. S. 635; 11 H. L. C. 337; Churchward v. R., 1865, L. R. 1 Q. B. 208; In re Agra Bank, 1867, L. R. 5 Eq. 164; Frost v. Knight, 1870-72, L. R. 5 Ex. 322; L. R. 7 Ex. 111; Wilkinson v. Verity, 1871, L. R. 6 C. P. 210; Roper v. Johnson, 1873, L. R. 8 C. P. 176; Metcalfe v. Britannia Ironworks Company, 1877 2 Q. B. D. 428; Societe General de Paris v. Milders, 1883, 49 L. T. 58; Mersey Steel and Iron Company v. Naylor, 1884, 9 App. Cas. 443; Johnstone v. Milling, 1886, 16 Q. B. D. 470; Rhymney Railway v. Brecon and Merthyr Tydfil Junction Railway, 1890, 69 L. J. Ch. 818; Synge v. Synge, [1894] 1 Q. B. 471; Ellis v. Pond, [1898] 1 Q. B. 439.

albert hochster against edgar frederick de la tour. Saturday, June / ;'. /"}.i2j25th, 1853. Declaration on an agreement to employ plaintiff as a courier, from ~. j,' ,a day subsequent to the date of the writ: averment that plaintiff, from the time of the agreement, till the refusal by defendant after mentioned, was ready and willing to perform his part of the contract: Breach, that, before the day for the commencement of the employment, defendant refused to perform the agreement, and discharged plaintiff from performing it, and wrongfully wholly put an end to the agreement. On motion in arrest of judgment:-Held : that a party to an executory agreement may, before the time for executing it, break the agreement either by disabling himself from fulfilling it, or by renouncing the contract; and that an action will lie for such breach before the time for the fulfilment of the agreement. That it sufficiently appeared, on the face of this declaration, that there was on the part of defendant, not merely an intention to break the contract, of which intention he might repent, but a renunciation communicated to plaintiff, on which plaintiff was entitled to act; and consequently that plaintiff was entitled to judgment. [S. C. 22 L. J. Q. B. 455; 17 Jur. 972; 1 W. B. 469. See Roberts v. Brett, 1859-65, 6 C. B. N. S. 635; 11 H. L. C. 337; Churchward v. B., 1865, L. B. 1 Q. B. 208; In re Agra Bank, 1867, L. B. 5 Eq. 164; frost v. Knight, 1870-72, L. B. 5 Ex. 322; L. B. 7 Ex. Ill; Wilkinson v. Ferity, 1871, L. B. 6 G. P. 210; Roper v. Johnson, 1873, L. B. 8 C. P. 176 ; Metcalfe v. Britannia Ironworks Company, 1877, 2 Q. B. D. 428; SocttM General de Paris v. Milders, 1883, 49 L. T. 58; Mersey Steel and Iron Company v. Naylor, 1884, 9 App. Cas. 443; Johnstmie v. Milling, 1886, 16 Q. B. D. 470; Rhymney Railway v. Brecon and Merthyr Tydfil Junction Railway, 1890, 69 L. J. Ch. 818; Synge v. Synge, [1894] L Q. B. 471 ; Ellis v. Pond, [1898] 1 C^. B. 439.] Declaration: "for that, heretofore, to wit on 12th April 1852, in consideration that plaintiff, at the request of defendant, would agree with the defend-[679]-ant to enter into the service and employ of the defendant in the capacity of a courier, on a certain day then to come, to wit the 1st day of June 1852, and to serve the defendant in that capacity, and travel with him on the continent of Europe as a courier for three months certain from the day and year last aforesaid, and to be ready to start with the defendant on such travels on the day and year last aforesaid, at and for certain wages or salary, to wit" 101. per month of such service, "the defendant then agreed with the plaintiff, and then promised him, that be, the defendant, would engage and employ the plaintiff' in the capacity of a courier on and from the said 1st day of June 1852 for three months" on these terms; "and to start on such travels with the plaintiff on the day and year last aforesaid, and to pay the plaintiff" on these terms : averment that plaintiff, confiding in the said agreement and promise of the defendant, "agreed with the defendant" to fulfil these terms on his part, "and to be ready to start with the defendant on such travels on the day and year last aforesaid, at and for the wages and salary aforesaid." That, "from the time of the making of said agreement of the said promise of the defendant until the time when the defendant wrongfully refused to perform and broke his said promise, and absolved, exonerated and discharged the plaintiff from the performance of his agreement as hereinafter mentioned, he the plaintiff was always ready and willing to enter into the service and employ of the defendant, in the capacity aforesaid, on the said 1st June 1852, and to serve the defen- 2EL&BL880. HOCHSTER V. DE LA TOUR 923 dant in that capacity, and to travel with him on the continent of Europe as a courier for three months certain from the day and year last aforesaid, and to start with the defendant on such travels on the day and year last aforesaid, [680] at and for the wages and salary aforesaid; and the plaintiff, but for the breach by the defendant of his said promise as hereinafter mentioned, would, on the said 1st June 1852, have entered into the said service and employ of the defendant in the capacity, and upon the terras and for the time aforesaid: of all which several premises the defendant always had notice and knowledge: yet the defendant, not regarding the said agreement, nor his said promise, afterwards and before the said 1st June 1852, wrongfully wholly refused and declined to engage or employ the defendant in the capacity and for tha purpose aforesaid, on or from the said 1st June 1852 for three months, or on, from or for, any other time, or to start on such travels with the plaintiff on the day and year last aforesaid, or in any manner whatsoever to perform or fulfil his said promise, and then wrongfully wholly absolved, exonerated and discharged the plaintiff from his said agreement, and from the performance of the same agreement on his the plaintiff's part, and from being ready and willing to perform the same on the plaintiff's part; and the defendant then wrongfully wholly broke, put an end to and determined his said promise and engagement:" to the damage of the plaintiff. The writ was dated on the 22d of May 1852. Pleas : 1. That defendant did not agree or promise in manner and form &c.: conclusion to the country. Issue thereon. 2. That plaintiff did not agree with defendant in...

To continue reading

Request your trial
64 cases
  • Heron, Gethin-Jones & Liow v John Chong
    • Singapore
    • Court of Appeal (Singapore)
    • Invalid date
  • Beach Club Enterprises Ltd v Horizon Management Ltd
    • Cayman Islands
    • Court of Appeal (Cayman Islands)
    • 7 June 1982
    ...2 Q.B. 473; [1964] 2 All E.R. 653. (9) Heyman v. Darwins Ltd., [1942] 1 All E.R. 337. (10) Hochster v. De La TourENR(1853), 2 E. & B. 678; 118 E.R. 922; [1843–60] All E.R. Rep. 12, followed. (11) Howe v. SmithELR(1884), 27 Ch. D. 89; [1881–5] All E.R. Rep. 201. (12) Johnson v. Agnew, [1980]......
  • Grains Jamaica Ltd v The Peppersource Ltd
    • Jamaica
    • Court of Appeal (Jamaica)
    • 30 July 2004
    ...That was settled in Hochster v. De la Tour (1853), 2 E & B. 678; 22 L.J.Q.B. 455; 22 L.T.O.S. 171; 17 Jur. 972; 1 W.R. 469; 1 C.L.R. 846; 118 E.R. 922; 12 Digest (Repl.) 877, 2960 in the Queen's Bench, and has never been doubted since; because there is a breach of the contract although the ......
  • Mann v Paterson Constructions Pty Ltd
    • Australia
    • High Court
    • 9 October 2019
    ...356–357 per Williams J, 362 per Conolly J, affd [1904] AC 442 at 451 per Lord Davey for the Privy Council. 253 (1853) 2 El & Bl 678 [118 ER 922]. 254 (1853) 2 El & Bl 678 at 688–689 per Lord Campbell CJ [ 118 ER 922 at 926]. See J F Burrows, “Contractual Co-operation and the Implied Term” (......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
6 books & journal articles
  • WORKPLACE SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN SINGAPORE: THE LEGAL CHALLENGE
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Journal No. 1999, December 1999
    • 1 December 1999
    ...Seremban). 170 Hartley v Harman (1840) 11 Ad & El 798, 113 ER 617; Goodman v Pocock(1850) 15 QB 576; Hochster v De la Tour(1853) 2 E&B 678, 118 ER 922; Frost v Knight(1872) LR 7 Exch 111; Brace v Calder[1895] 2 QB 253. 171 McGregor on Damages, supra n 166 at para 1229, 172 See, eg, Goh Kim ......
  • Contract Law
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Annual Review No. 2015, December 2015
    • 1 December 2015
    ...that promised state of affairs from arising. 12.142 Thus, precisely as was held in Hochster v De La Tour(1853) 2 El & Bl 678 at 689; 118 ER 922 at 926, the genesis of the doctrine of anticipatory breach: [W]here there is a contract to do an act on a future day, there is a relation constitut......
  • Anticipatory Repudiation
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books The Law of Contracts. Third Edition Performance and Breach
    • 4 August 2020
    ...concern that the plaintiff be in a position to mitigate to hold that the innocent party, when confronted 2 (1853), 2 El & Bl 678, 118 ER 922 (QB). And see P Mitchell, “ Hochster v De La Tour (1853)” in C Mitchell & P Mitchell, eds, Landmark Cases in the Law of Contracts (Oxford: Hart Publis......
  • From Remembering to Analyzing: Using Mini Mock Arguments to Deepen Understanding and Increase Engagement
    • United States
    • Journal of Legal Studies Education No. 37-1, December 2020
    • 1 December 2020
    ...124 N.Y. 538 (N.Y. 1891) (classic contract case regarding what con-stitutes consideration, reversing lower court)Hochster v. De La Tour,2 El. & Bl. 678 (1853) (classic British contract law case regardingdischarge by anticipatory repudiation)Hoffmanv.RedOwlStores,133 N.W.2d 267 (Wis. 1965) (......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT