1. This is a suit, for arrears of rent. It was necessary for the plaintiff to establish that he was the defendants landlord. He proposed to do that by utilizing, among other things a decree for rent which he had obtained in a prior suit against these defendants. The lower Appellate Court has rejected the decree as an item of evidence, apparently on the ground that it was ex parts. This is manifestly erroneous. The decree is not merely an item of evidence, but is conclusive as to the relationship between the parties at the time to which the previous suit referred. That does not mean that in the circumstances of this case it is conclusive as to the present relation between the parties. But it is good and valuable evidence in so far as it establishes the relationship at a time that has passed. Its value becomes more apparent when the terms of Section 114 of the Evidence Act and illustration (d) are borne in mind, which does not compel, but certainly permits, the Court to make a presumption as to the continuance of the state of things. The decree has been excluded from consideration by the lower Appellate Court in error.
2. We must, therefore, reverse the decree of the lower Appellate Court and send back the case in order that it may be determined according to law. Costs hitherto incurred will abide the result.