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Settled Colony And Reception Of English Law
Justice Brennan said:

'The theory which underpins the application of English law to the Colony of New South Wales is that English settlers brought with them the law of England and that, as the indigenous inhabitants were regarded as barbarous or unsettled and without a settled law, the law of England including the common law became the law of the Colony (so far as it was locally applicable) as though New South Wales were "an uninhabited country... discovered and planted by English subjects".'

Keywords: barbarism, Brennan, Justice Gerard, British law, Canberra, Common Law, land use, Mabo judgement, settlements, sovereignty, terra nullius, 1992

(1992) 175 C.L.R. 1 at 37-38.
Author: Nettheim, Garth
Source: Brennan, Justice