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Knox, George (1845–1888)

News was received yesterday morning of the death at Cairo, Egypt, on the 9th instant, of Mr. George Knox. Mr. Knox was 43 years old, and his death at this comparatively early age must be regarded as a loss to the community. A son of the Hon. Edward Knox, M.L.C., Mr. George Knox was educated at the Sydney Grammar School and at the Sydney University, where in 1863 and again in 1864 he was awarded a University scholarship, besides distinguishing himself in other ways. From Sydney he went to England, and matriculated at Cambridge, where he subsequently took his degree, and having become a member of Lincoln's Inn, was called to the bar by the Benchers on 15th November, 1870. For the next three years he devoted himself with great assiduity to his profession, working hard as a pupil in the chambers of a well-known conveyancer and equity draftsman, and obtaining a thoroughly sound knowledge of the principles of law. He then returned to Sydney, and was admitted to the Bar of New South Wales on 11th November, 1873, and in the following year took his degree of M.A. at Sydney. He worked hard at his profession, and for several years was engaged in reporting the decisions of our Supreme Court, his reports being regarded with great favour by the profession, the cases being well-selected and the report of the points decided being terse and accurate. As a barrister he got into good business, which would have been greater, but that the doctors warned him against taking court work, which for a time he had to give up and devote himself almost entirely to chamber practice. Besides this work, he acted as Supreme Court Judge on one or two occasions on circuit, for a considerable time was lecturer on law to the University, was a member of the Board for the admission of barristers, and also an examiner of articled clerks. Last year he was appointed a director of the Australian Mutual Provident Society, and was also elected a member of the Senate of the University. Towards the latter part of the year his health became still further impaired. He had long suffered from heart disease and also from delicate lungs, and his work had often been interrupted by attacks which caused him acute pain. Acting upon medical advice, he left for Egypt, accompanied by his wife, and he appeared so much the better for the change that he himself looked forward to returning to Sydney almost at once. The last news received was good, but only proved the precursor to the sad news of his death. In Mr. George Knox the Bar has lost one of its best members. For sound knowledge of the law of real property, and of the principles and practice of equity, Mr. Knox had probably no superior in the colony, and those who consulted him on any branch of law could not fail to be struck by the general range as well as the accuracy of his information. For some time prior to his death he had been engaged in preparing, and had, we believe, nearly completed, a work on the law of real property in New South Wales, and if it is sufficiently advanced to be published, it cannot fail to be a work of great utility. His brother barristers will feel the loss of Mr. Knox, not only as that of a sound lawyer, but in all those many ways in which he showed his sympathy with their interests, and did his best to uphold the honour of their profession.

His Honor Mr. Justice Owen on taking his seat in the Equity Court yesterday, stated that he had just received a letter from Mr. A. Knox informing him of the death of Mr. Geo. Knox. He very much regretted the fact, and that regret would, he was sure, be shared by every member of the Bar. Mr. Knox had always discharged his duties in that court with distinguished ability, high integrity, and honour. By his decease not only the legal profession, but the public would experience a great loss. Out of respect to his memory he would adjourn the court, but us there was a part heard case which it was very desirable to conclude as quickly as possible, he would only vacate the bench during the morning, feeling sure that he would honour Mr. Knox's memory more in doing his duty than by fully adjourning the court. Mr. C. .J. Manning, on behalf of the Bar, expressed great regret at the news of the death of Mr. Knox, who was always regarded as a sound lawyer, and held in great respect by the members of the profession. The Court then adjourned.

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'Knox, George (1845–1888)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/knox-george-15603/text26811, accessed 22 November 2017.

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