The same kind of question arises in regard to a description of the property sold. The land or goods to be sold, or also the debt to be guaranteed, must be sufficiently described for reasonable identification. A distinction should be noticed between sales or contracts to sell specific goods, and contracts to sell goods of a certain kind. In a contract of the latter sort, a memorandum need be no more definite than the contract. If the contract is definite enough to be enforced, a memorandum which states the contract as it was made will be sufficient,1 and, on the other hand, if the memorandum is more general than the actual contract, the memorandum will be insufficient, though seeming good on its face because not fully stating the contract the parties made.2 Where, however, the sale or con-
98Lovesey p. Palmer, [19181 2 Ch. 233; Newberry v. Brown, 20 Dom. L. R. 896. Cf. Andrews v. Calori, 38 Can. S. C. 688.
99In Jarrett v. Hunter, 34 Ch. D. 182, 184, Kay, J., said: "The law on this subject at present is this: If the vendor is described in the contract as 'proprietor,' 'owner,' 'mortgagee,' or the like, the description is sufficient, although he is not named; but if he is described as 'vendor,' or as 'client' or 'friend' of a named agent, that is not sufficient; the reason given being, in the language of Lord Cairns, that the former description 'is a statement of matter of fact, as to which there can be perfect certainty, and none of the dangers struck at by the Statute of Frauds can arise;' Rossiter v. Miller, 3 App. Css. 1124, 1141; Sale v. Lambert, L. R. 18 Eq. 1; Potter v. Duffield, L. R. 18 Eq. 4, 8, the reason against the latter description being that, in order to find out who is vendor, client, or friend, you must go into evidence on which there might possibly, as in Potter v. Duffield, be a conflict, and that, says the late Master of the Rolls in the last-named case, 'is exactly what the Act says shall not be decided by parol evidence.' 'I should be thrown,' he continues, 'on parol evidence to decide who sold the estate, who was the party to the contract, the Act requiring that fact to be in writ-ing.'"
1Thus a writing stating that the signer released "all claim under the will" of K is a sufficient memorandum of a contract to that effect, whatever interest in real or personal property is thereby affected. Koenig v. Koenig, 92 Kans. 761, 142 Pac. 261. See also Frost v. Alward, 176 Cal. 691,169 Pac. 379.
2See supra, Sec. 675; also American Mfg. Co. v. Midland Steel Co., 101 tract relates to specific property, there can be no question about lack of definiteness in the contract itself so far as concerns the property to which the bargain relates; the question is wholly whether the memorandum sufficiently describes this property. This question has risen more frequently in regard to sales of real estate than in regard to sales of personal properly; still there are a few decisions in regard to goods.3 It will be seen from the decisions cited below that the American courts have required greater particularity in descriptions of real estate than in descriptions of goods. In the cases relating to real estate it may be that too great stress is laid upon a description that will identify beyond possibility of doubt the subject-matter of the sale. "John Smith" in a memorandum does not identify, beyond a peradventure, a party so designated, but it is a suffi-
Fed. Rep. 200, where billets "4 x 5 or 5 x 5" was held sufficient description.
3 New England Wool Co. v. Standard Worsted Co., 165 Mass. 328, 43 N. E. 112. In this ease the property described was "about 2,000 to 2,600 lbs. F. C." The property in regard to which the parties were bargaining was in fact, 2,443 lbs. of "F. C." wool. The court held the description sufficient because when it was shown "who and where the parties were at the time of making the contract, and what property the plain-tut had on hand of the kind described, it is clear without more that the memorandum referred to the 2,443 lbs. of wool on hand." No doubt the court is right in saying that it was possible to translate the memorandum when the surrounding circumstances and the time and place of the bargain was shown but that would also be true of a memorandum which read: "I have sold you the goods you looked at, at the usual price," but it may be doubted whether this memorandum would be sufficient. In Burgess Sulphite Fibre Co. v, Broomneld, 180 Mass. 283, 62 N. E. 367, the words, "all your iron which you may desire to sell," were *eld a sufficient description of iron on the premises of the plaintiff's mill. In Brewer v. Horst-Lachmund Co., 127 Cal. 643, 60 Pao. 418, 50 L. R. A. 240, the subject-matter of the sale was a certain lot of hops. Samples had been given from these hops and, in accordance with a custom in the bade, samples were designated by a number-in this case, "13." The reference to the goods in a telegram as "13" was held a sufficient description of them. A more extreme case is Macdonald v. Longbottom, 1 E. & E. 977, where evidence was admitted to show that the words, "your wool," referred to certain particular wool which the plaintiff had under his control at the time of the contract. In Shardlow v. Cotterell, 20 Ch. D. 90 (C. A.), Lush, L. J., said (at p. 97): "Suppose a horsedealer having a great number of horses offers one of them for sale; the horse is trotted out and approved of, but the parties differ about the price. Suppose the next day the seller writes and says, 'I will let you have that horse for £50,' and the buyer writes to accept the offer, would not parol evidence be admissible to show what horse was meant? " cient description of a person of that name intended. It may perhaps be questioned whether "Estate on Congress Street, owned by Sarah A. Hill," is not a sufficient description of the estate the parties were bargaining about, although the description may be applicable to another piece of property also.4 The