Inside the Supreme Court Library

Because it’s Friday, it’s time for a heart-lifting post.

One of the many perks of being a lawyer is getting to work in some of the most beautiful buildings every constructed.  I wanted to stretch my legs this lunchtime and I took some pictures I’d like to share of the heart of the library of the Supreme Court of Victoria.

scvic
Image from here

The Supreme Court building itself is beautifully ornate sandstone on the outside.  When you get inside it, though, it gets even better.  At the very heart of the library is a gorgeously sculpted lamp over a reading desk.  I suppose the lamp must have been gas-powered originally.

The part of the building around this area consists of two roughly levels which contain the leading Australian and British law reports and law journals (the Commonwealth Law Reports, the Victorian Reports, the Appeals Cases, the Law Institute Journal and so on).  Other series of reports (American, Canadian and so on are elsewhere in the library)

Each of the sections of the floor is lavishly decorated.

A highlight for me are the stained-glass windows at the top of the dome.  They contain the small detail of Britain’s lion and unicorn crest and Australia’s kangaroo and emu.  I like the notion of showing the place where English law began and where it has now taken root.

The flora in this image seems to be the English rose.
The flora here seems to be stylised wattle leaves

I’m as much of a fan of electronic access to information as the next lawyer.  Certainly my work would be a great deal harder if I needed to go to the Court every time I wanted to read a case, rather than simply flipping open Austlii.  But I think it’s a good thing for any lawyer to head into a library like this one and remind themselves of the proud tradition – and honourable profession – they are part of.