This book contains edited versions of thirty British legal cases
involving accounting issues decided from 1849-1888. These cases are
a valuable source of information about the development of
accounting principles and practices in nineteenth-century Great
Britain. The thirty cases show that the court decisions involved a
rich variety of accounting issues. In some cases courts upset
private contractual stipulations regarding accounting and dividend
matters. In others, management was held to have used incorrect
principles in computing profits. Whether or not a contract or
management decision was upset, the courts often discussed at some
length the principles that management should apply in the
preparation of balance sheets or income statements. It is therefore
obvious that in resolving issues of equity among participants in
British companies, the courts were applying normative accounting
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