Revici v Prentice Hall Incorporated

JurisdictionEngland & Wales
Judgment Date11 December 1968
Judgment citation (vLex)[1968] EWCA Civ J1211-2
CourtCourt of Appeal (Civil Division)
Date11 December 1968
Emanuel Revici
Prentice Hall Incorporated
Prentice Hall International Incorporated
McCall Corporation
Mccall Publishing Company Limited and
Seymour Press Limited

[1968] EWCA Civ J1211-2


The Master of the Rolls (Lord Denning)

Lord Justice Edmund Davies and

Lord Justice Widgery

In The Supreme Court of Judicature

The Court of Appeal

(Civil Division)

(From: Mr. Justice Eveleigh - in Chambers)

Mr. COLIN DUNCAN, Q.C. and Mr. N.A. PHILLIPS (instructed by Messrs. Oswald Hickson Collier & Co.) appeared on behalf of the Appellant (Plaintiff).

Mr. MORRIS FINER, Q.C. and Mr. A.C. Pugh (instructed by Messrs. Rubinstein Nash & Co.) appeared on behalf of the Respondents (Third Defendants).


Dr. Emanuel Revici lives in New York. He has been interested in the cure of cancer. In 1961 a book was published which was critical of his treatment and methods. In America there is published a magazine called McCall's Magazine which has a world-wide circulation of millions of copies. In that magazine in 1965 there was an article which criticised Dr. Revici's remedies. It said: "LET'S STOP THESE HEEDLESS CANCER DEATHS. Half of all cancer victims can be cured. Unproved remedies, by robbing these patients of time, steal their chances to live. Needed now: more laws and public knowledge about useless drugs and quack 'cures' for the nation's No. 2 killer".


Dr. Revici says that the article was a libel on him. It meant that he was a "quack". He started proceedings in 1965 in the courts of New York, claiming damages for libel, relying on publication all over the world. His action was struck out because the Court said it was not an imputation on him personally but only an imputation about his method of treatment. It was like an imputation upon goods, and as such not actionable, by the New York law, without proof of special damage. The ruling was upheld by the Appellate Division. An appeal was lodged to the Court of Appeal but that was not proceeded with. And so Dr.& Revici's New York action went by the board.


Then Dr. Revici issued a writ in England against, amongst others, the McCall Corporation as the publishers of this magazine. He complained of the publication of the words in England. We are told that some 6,000 copies of McCall's Magazine circulate in England. It is a very tiny number compared to the 8 million in the United States and other parts of the world. Dr. Revici sought leave to serve the English proceedings out of the jurisdiction on the American corporation, on the ground that there was a tort committed within the jurisdiction. That application for leave came before Master Jacob. There was very considerable argument. The American corporation said that it was not a propercase for service out of the jurisdiction, because the matter had been dealt with in the courts of New York. It was an action by a New York citizen against a New York publication; and, if the courts of New York would riot entertain it, we also should not entertain it.


Master Jacob went into the matter very carefully. He gaves reserved decision considering all the points in the case. Eventually, in his discretion, he refused leave to serve the American corporation out of the jurisdiction. He gave his written decision on the 5th April, 1968.


Dr. Revici wanted to consider appealing to the judge. He was given six weeks, by consent, so that his advisers could consider the transcript of the Master's judgment. Then he was given another three weeks, by consent. Then he got two more weeks. He got eleven weeks altogether. By the 19th June he had not given any Notice of Appeal at all. His time for appealing had long expired. Prom the 5th April to the 19th...

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    • August 12, 1980
    ...581, distinguished. (4) Ratnam v. Cumarasamy, [1965] 1 W.L.R. 8; [1964] 3 All E.R. 933, applied. (5) Revici v. Prentice Hall Inc., [1969] 1 W.L.R. 157; [1969] 1 All E.R. 772, applied. (6) Waller v. Omega Bay Estates Ltdl, Court of Appeal, Civil App. No. 14 of 1977, July 19th, 1978, unreport......
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    ...of Appeal, relying on the cases of City Printery v. Gleaner Co. (supra), Ratnam v. Cumarasamy (supra) and Revici v. Prentice Hall Inc. [1969] 1 W.L.R 157, inter alia. found that no satisfactory explanation for the inordinate delay of two years and ten months was given, and refused the appl......
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    ...Water Commission— [2010] JMCA Civ. 4; and Peter Haddad and Donald Silvera— SCCA No. 31/2003; and Revici and Prentice Hall Inc.— [1969] 1 W.L.R. 157. 24 Applying those settled legal principles to the applicants'/ claimants' application for an extension of time, as is now at hand, this court......
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3 books & journal articles
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    • Nigeria
    • DSC Publications Online Sasegbon's Laws of Nigeria. Volume 6: Part II Courts 2
    • June 27, 2016
    ...offered , no indulgence should be granted (italics and brackets supplied by me) (See Revici v. Prentice Hall Incorporated and others (1969) 1 All E.R. 772 at 774).” - Per Idigbe, J.S.C. in Williams v. Hope Rising Suit No. S.C. 42/1981; (1982) Paras. 1900,1901 Vol. 6 Pt. II: COURTS 2 386 13 ......
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    • December 1, 1999
    ...including Wee Chong Jin CJ (Singapore) and Tan Ah Tah FJ). 8 The more recent cases will be examined in the course of this article. 9 [1969] 1 All ER 772. 10 Ibid, at 773—774. 11 Supra. 12 [1969] 1 All ER 772, at 773—774. As was Eaton v Storer(1882) 22 Ch D 91 (in which the Atwood principle ......
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    • DSC Publications Online Nigerian Supreme Court Cases. 1982 Cases reported in 1982
    • November 22, 2022
    ...N.A. Williams & Others v. Hope Rising Voluntary Society (1981) 1-2 S.C. 145 at 152. 2. Revici v. Prentice Hall Incorporated & Others (1969) 1 All E.R. 772 at 774. S.B. Joseph for the Appellant. Chief S.O. Morohundiya, with him A. Gbeleyi for the Respondents. SOWEMIMO, J.S.C. (Presiding): Wh......

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