William Meigh Goodman

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Sir W. Meigh Goodman, Chief Justice of Hong Kong

Sir W. Meigh Goodman KC was a British lawyer and Judge. He served as Attorney General and Chief Justice of British Honduras and Hong Kong in the late 19th and early 20th Century.

His last position before retirement was as Chief Justice of Hong Kong.

First name[edit]

Goodman went by the first name Meigh but used the first initial W. on formal documents.

Early life[edit]

Goodman was born in 1847 and was the fourth son of Samuel Robert Goodman, of London. Goodman was educated at University College of London where he obtained a B.A. in 1867. He was called to the Bar at the Middle Temple in 1870.[1] He practised on the South Eastern Circuit and at the Surrey Sessions.[2]

Legal appointments[edit]

Goodman served as Attorney General of British Honduras (now Belize) from 1883 to 1886 and as Chief Justice of the same colony from 1886 to 1889. In 1886 he was commissioner to revise and consolidate the laws of British Honduras.[3]

In 1889 he was appointed Attorney General of Hong Kong and served in that capacity until 1902. He was appointed a Queen's Counsel in 1900.[4]

In March 1902, he was appointed Chief Justice of Hong Kong.[5] He served as Chief Justice until 1905.[6] In 1903 he presided over the laying of the foundation stone for the new Hong Kong Supreme Court building.[7]


Goodman retired to England in 1905. In 1907, he published a book "Reminiscences of a Colonial Judge".

He died on 3 May 1928 at the age of 81.[8]


  1. ^ The county families of the United Kingdom; or, Royal manual of the titled and untitled aristocracy of England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland (Volume ed.59, yr.1919). p148
  2. ^ Norton Kyshe, The History of the Laws and Courts of Hong Kong, Vol II, p412n
  3. ^ Norton Kyshe, The History of the Laws and Courts of Hong Kong, Vol II, p412n
  4. ^ London Gazette, 26 June 1900, p3963
  5. ^ The London Gazette: no. 27415. p. 1727. 11 March 1902.
  6. ^ The County Families of UK, op cit
  7. ^ W Goodman, Reminiscences of a Colonial Judge,p306
  8. ^ Obituary, Straits Times, 10 July 1928, p7