Brown v. Rundlett, 15 N. H. 360; Hovey v. Pitcher, 13 Mo. 191; Hyde v. Paige, 9 Barb. 150; Johnson v. Smith, 21 Conn. 627; Ogden v. Raymond, i2 lb. 379; Sydnor v. Hurd, 8 Tex. 98. In simple contracts, if the agent does not disclose his agency, he binds himself, and so if he exceeds his authority: Royce v. Allen, 28 Vt. 234; Hodges v. Green, lb. 358; Forney v. Shipp, 4 454 portant to bear in mind the rule, that this election, when once made, is binding. This is the main point which is illustrated by the case of Paterson v. Gandasequi, already cited, when, under the facts before described, the Court laid down, that if the seller of goods knows, at the time of making the contract of sale, that the buyer, although dealing with him in his own name, is in reality the agent of another, and elects to give credit to the agent, he cannot afterwards recover *the value from the known principal. In the subsequent but almost cotemporary case of Addison v. Gandasequi (r), the latter, who had acted towards the plaintiff in a similar manner to that described in noticing the case of Paterson v. Gandasequi, was held not to be liable, Addison having, with full knowledge of the facts, debited Larrazabal in his books. In both these cases there was evidence that the vendor had elected to look to the agent for payment, knowing at the time of the contract, that another person was the principal, and also knowing who that principal was; but in Paterson v. Gandasequi, there being some doubt how far the plaintiff had a perfect knowledge of the fact that the defendant was the principal at the time of the contract, the Court granted a new trial. There was no such doubt in Addison v. Gandasequi. In the more recent case of Thomson v. Davenport (s), which was a writ of error brought on a judgment obtained in the borough
(r) 4 Taunt. 573; 2 Smith L. C. 369, 8th edit. (s) Supra, n. (q).
Jones, 52"; McClellan v. Parker, 27 Mo. 162; Murray v. Carothers, 1 Mete. (Ky.) 71. A written agreement signed "A. B. by C. D. agent," does not bind the agent personally, although the principal resides beyond seas: Bray v. Kettell, 1 Allen, 80. When a person proposes to act as an agent, disclosing the name of his principal, he assumes no personal responsibility, unless he acts fraudulently: Seery v. Socks, 29 111. 313; Baker v. Chambles, 4 Greene, 428. A party who signed notes as president of a bank which has no legal existence is personally liable on them: Allen v.Pegram, 16 Iowa, 163.-s.
Court of Liverpool against Thomson, the plaintiff in error, one M'Kune having received an order from Thomson for the purchase of goods, ordered them from Davenport & Co., the plaintiffs in the Court below, letting them know that they were for his employer, but not mentioning the name of any principal. Davenport and Co. named M'Kune as *purchaser in the invoice of the goods: the Court considered that these plaintiffs, having treated M'Kune as their debtor, whilst ignorant of the real purchaser, were not bound by that election, but might afterwards sue the principal, Thomson, for the price. "I take it to be a general rule," said Lord Tenterden, "that if a person sells goods (supposing at the time of the contract that he is dealing with a principal), but afterwards discovers that the person with whom he has been dealing is not the principal in the transaction, but agent for a third person, though he may in the meantime have debited the agent with it, he may afterwards recover the amount from the real principal; subject, however, to this qualification, that the state of the account between the principal and the agent is not altered to the prejudice of the principal. On the other hand, if, at the time of the sale, the seller knows, not only that the person who is nominally dealing with him is not principal but agent, and also knows who the principal really is, and notwithstanding all that knowledge, chooses to make the agent his debtor, dealing with him, and him alone, then the seller cannot afterwards, on the failure of the agent, turn round and charge the principal, having once made his election at the time when he had the power of choosing between the one and the other. The present is a middle case. At the time of the dealing for the goods the plaintiffs were informed that *M'Kune, who came to them to buy the goods, was dealing for another, that is, that he was an agent; but they were not informed who the principal was. They had not therefore, at that time, the means of making their election. It is true, that they might perhaps have obtained those means if they had made further inquiry; but they made no further inquiry. Not knowing who the principal really was, they had not the power at that instant of making their election. That being so, it seems to me that this middle case falls, in substance and effect, within the first proposition that I have mentioned, the case of a person not known to be an agent, and not within the second, where the buyer is not merely known to be an agent, but the name of his principal is also known. There may be another case, and that is, where a British merchant is buying for a foreigner. According to the universal understanding of merchants and of all persons in trade, the credit is then considered to be given to the British buyer, and not to the foreigner" (t), although, of course, a contract may be made by the agent so as to charge the foreigner and not himself (u). Indeed, it hardly requires mentioning, that the question, which is liable-*the foreign principal or the English agent-is one of intention (v), in which the fact, that the principal debtor is a foreigner residing abroad, renders it highly improbable that the credit should have been given to him (x).
(t) See Wilson v. Zulueta, 19 L. J. (Q. B.) 49; 14 Q. B. (68 E. C. L. R.) 405, S. C.; Armstrong v. Stokes, L. R. 7 Q. B., at p. 605, 41 L. J. Q. B., at p. 257; Elbinger Actien-Gesellschaft v. Clave, L. R. 8 Q. B. 313, 42 L. J. (Q. B.) 151; Hutton v. Bullock, L. R. 8 Q. B. 331.