Gambar halaman
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

CHAPTER 1.

DEFINITION AND HISTORY OF TORTS.

[ocr errors]

SECTION 1. DEFINITION OF TORT.
Although the branch of law now treated under the
designation of torts is one of the earliest to appear
in any legal system, the name itself has only come
into general use during the past half century.

It is very difficult to give any definition of tort
which is both correct and concise. The reason for this
lies largely in the great variety of wrongs which are
included under this general title. The field of the
law of torts is very broad, overlapping the field of
criminal law on the one side, and that of contracts
on the other.

“The term 'tort,' being indefinable because of its generality, it follows that such definitions of tort as commend themselves at first glance, will, upon examination turn out to be spurious. The following proposition, for instance, is a terse and accurate statement of a certain legal truth, and at first blush it may appear to be a logical definition. A tort, we may say, is that legal wrong, or breach of duty, which is capable of being redressed in a civil action for damages. But this proposition states no criterion for distinguishing between a breach of contract and a tort, and in fact merely amounts to this, that a tort is a legal wrong for which damages may be recovered. This statement is true enough, but it is no definition.”'1

One of the best definitions of this term which

1

|

· Street's Foundation of Legal

Liability, Vol. I, p. XXVII.

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »