Charles Swinfen Eady, 1st Baron Swinfen

The Right Honourable
The Lord Swinfen
Master of the Rolls
In office
3 May 1918  3 November 1919
Preceded by The Lord Cozens-Hardy
Succeeded by The Lord Sterndale
Personal details
Born Charles Swinfen Eady
31 July 1851
Chertsey, Surrey
Died 15 November 1919
Nationality British
Spouse(s) Blanche Maude Lee (d. 1946)
Alma mater University of London
Profession Barrister, judge

Charles Swinfen Eady, 1st Baron Swinfen, PC (31 July 1851 – 15 November 1919), was a British lawyer and judge.


Eady was the son of George John Eady of Chertsey, Surrey, and his wife Laura Maria Smith, daughter of Richard Smith. He was educated privately and at the University of London, and was admitted a solicitor in 1874.

In 1879 Eady was called to the Bar, Inner Temple.[1] He built a successful legal practice and became a Queen's Counsel in 1893.[1] He was appointed a Judge of the High Court of Justice (Chancery Division) in November 1901,[2] and knighted the following month.[3] He held this office until 1913, when he was appointed a Lord Justice of Appeal, serving until 1918. The latter year he succeeded Lord Cozens-Hardy as Master of the Rolls. However, Eady's health soon began to decline and he resigned in the autumn of 1919. He had been admitted to the Privy Council in 1913 and on 1 November 1919 was raised to the peerage as Baron Swinfen, of Chertsey in the County of Surrey.[4]

Mr Justice Swinfen Eady gave a key judgment in 1903 which protected Kodak's trademarks from infingement from competitors,[5] which the British Journal of Photography described as the most important for photography to have been heard since Talbot v. Laroche in 1854. He also gave the judgment in Percival v Wright [1902] 2 Ch 401, a key decision on directors' duties.

Lord Swinfen married, in 1894, Blanche Maude Lee, daughter of Sydney Williams Lee.[1] They had one son and two daughters.

He died, aged sixty-eight, at 33 Hyde Park Gardens, London, on 15 November 1919, only two weeks after his elevation to the peerage. He was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium.[6] He was succeeded in the barony by his only son Charles.


  1. 1 2 3 "The new judge". The Times (36604). London. 5 November 1901. p. 7.
  2. The London Gazette: no. 27373. p. 7221. 8 November 1901.
  3. The London Gazette: no. 27389. p. 8979. 20 December 1901.
  4. The London Gazette: no. 31628. p. 13419. 4 November 1919.
  5. Kodak v London Stereoscopic (1903) 20 RPC 337
  6. The Complete Peerage, Volume XIII - Peerage Creations 1901-1938. St Catherine's Press. 1949. p. 325.
Legal offices
Preceded by
Sir Herbert Cozens-Hardy
Master of the Rolls
Succeeded by
Lord Sterndale
Peerage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baron Swinfen
Succeeded by
Charles Swinfen Eady
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