In a number of States, by statute or otherwise, authority to execute contracts for the sale of land must be in writing, though such contracts need not be sealed.18 And where the authority is required to be in writing, ratification of an unauthorized writing must also be written.19 In such States if local statutes forbid an oral lease for a period exceeding one year, a longer written lease cannot be made by an agent without written authority.20 Apart from statute the great weight of authority sustains the power to give an agent oral authority to make a contract for the purchase or sale of land.21 In Georgia any contract of which a written memorandum is required when entered into by the principal himself, cannot be made by an agent on his behalf unless the agent has written authority.22 In Kentucky, contracts of suretyship cannot be executed by an agent unless his authority is written.23 If the general principle assumed by many of the cases cited in this section is sound-that the authority of the agent must be executed with the same formality that is required in the execution of the contract which the agent is to execute, it follows that if attestation or acknowledgment is required for the validity of a contract, it is also required for the validity of a power of attorney.24
17 See infra, Sec.296.
18 Thompson v. New South Coal Co., 135 Ala. 630, 34 So. 31; Tootny v. Dun-phy, 86 Cal. 639, 25 Pac. 130; Lambert v. Gemer, 142 Cal. 399, 76 Pac. 53; Castner v. Richardson, 18 Colo. 406, 33 Pac. 163; Johnson v. Lennox, 55 Colo. 125,133 Pac. 744; Koaol v. Dear-lore, 144 111. 23, 32 N. E. 542, 36 Am. St. Rep. 416; Cowan v. Cumin, 216 111. 598,75 N. E. 322; Smith v. Schriver, 91 Kans. 582, 138 Pac. 5S4; Detroit, etc, R. Co. v. Haiti, 147 Mich. 354, 110 N. W. 1089; Newlin v. Hoyt, 91 Minn. 409, 98 N. W. 323 (but an undisclosed principal may enforce a written contract made by an orally authorised agent in his own name. Davidson p. Hurty, 116 Minn. 280, 133 N. W. 862, 39 L. R. A. (N. S.) 324; Unruh v. Roemer, 135 Minn. 127, 160 N. W, 251]; Kirkpatrick v. Pease, 202 Mo.
471,101 S. W. 651; Marshall v. Trerise, 33 Mont. 28, 81 Pac. 400; Frabm v. Metcalf, 75 Neb. 241, 106 N. W. 227; Walk v. Hibberd, 65 Or. 497, 133 Pac. 95; Llewellyn v. Sunnyaide Coal Co., 242 Pa, 517, 89 Atl. 575; Dal v. Fischer, 20 S. Dak. 426, 107 N. W. 534.
19Harper, etc., Co. v. Jackson, 240 Pa. 312, 314, 87 Atl. 430; Llewellyn v. Sunnyaide Coal Co., 242 Pa. 517, 89 Atl. 575.
20Rogan v. Arnold, 233 111 19, 84 N. E. 58; Mcintosh 0. Hodges, 110 Mich. 319, 68 N. W. 158, 70 N. W. S50; Hoover v. Pacific Oil Co., 41 Mo. App. 317; Landt v. Schneider, 31 Mont. 15, 77 Pac. 307. In New Jersey the requirement applies only to leases exceeding three years. Clement v. Young-McShea Amusement Co., 70 N. J. Eq. 677, 67 Atl. 82.