He was the son of W. Dering Addison, of Maidstone. He was elected to the bar in 1842, joined the home circuit; he was a revising barrister for Kent. In 1848 he married Frances Octavia, twelfth child of the Honourable James Wolfe Murray, Lord Cringletie, by whom he left seven children.
In 1838 he published Damascus and Palmyra, describing a journey in the Middle East. He then wrote a History of the Knight Templars, the first two editions of which appeared in 1842 and a third in 1852. In 1843 he published another historical work on the Temple Church. He was best known as the author of two legal text-books, a Treatise on the Law of Contracts, 1845, and Wrongs and their Remedies, a Treatise on the Law of Torts, 1860, which went through several editions in the UK and US.