I am probably risking one of his characteristically mild (and therefore far more effective) chastisements by describing him as ‘The Lord Denning of his generation’, but the students I taught in the decade or so in which Michael Kirby graced the High Court Bench assigned to him the almost mythical status which students of my generation afforded to that most famous Master of the Rolls in the 1960s – to the point at which, when I once introduced him at a student breakfast like some sort of conjurer with a magic cape, there appeared to be some to whom it came as a shock to learn that Michael actually existed.