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NAIL, A measure of length, equal to two inches and a quarter. Vide Measure.

NAKED. This word is used in a metaphorical sense to denote that a thing is not complete, and for want of some quality it is either without power, or it possesses a limited power. A naked contract, is one made without consideration, and, for that reason, it is void; a naked authority, is one given without any right in the agent, and wholly for the benefit of the principal. 2 Bouv. Inst. n. 1302. See Nudum Pactum.

NAME. One or more words used to distinguish a particular individual, as Socrates, Benjamin Franklin.

2. The Greeks, as is well known, bore only one name, and it was one of the especial rights of a father to choose the names for hi's children and to alter them if he pleased. It was customary to give to the eldest son the name of the grandfather on his father's side. The day on which children received their names was the tenth after their birth. The tenth day, called 'denate,' was a festive day, and friends and relatives were invited to take part in a sacrifice and a repast. If in a court of justice proofs could be adduced that a father had held the denate, it was sufficient evidence that be had recognized the child as his own. Smith's Diet. of Greek and Rom. Antiq. h. v.

3. Among the Romans, the division into races, and the subdivision of races into families, caused a great multiplicity of names. They had first the pronomen, which was proper to the person; then the nomen, belonging to his race; a surname or cognomen, designating the family; and sometimes an agnomen, which indicated the branch of that family in which the author has become distinguished. Thus, for example, Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus; Publius is the pronomen; Cornelius, the nomen, designating the name of the race Cornelia; Scipio, the cognomen, or surname of the family; and Africanus, the agnomen, which indicated his exploits.

4. Names are divided into Christian names, as, Benjamin, and surnames, as, Franklin.

5. No man can have more than one Christian name; 1 Ld. Raym. 562; Bac. Ab. Misnomer, A; though two or more names usually ke* t separate, as John and Peter, may undoubtedly be compounded, so as to form, in contemplation of law, but one. 5 T. R. 195. A letter put between the Christian and surname, as an abbreviation of a part of the Christian name, as, John B. Peterson, is no part of either. 4 Watts' R. 329; 5 John. R. 84; 14 Pet. R. 322; 3 Pet. R. 7; 2 Cowen. 463; Co. Litt. 3 a; 1 Ld. Raym. 562; , Vin. Ab. Misnomer, C 6, pl. 5 and 6: Com. Dig. Indictment, G 1, note u; Willes, R. 654; Bac. Abr. Misnomer and Addition; 3 Chit. Pr. 164 to 173; 1 Young, R. 602. But see 7 Watts & Serg. 406.

5. In general a corporation must contract and sue and be sued by its corporate name; 8 Jobn. R. 295; 14 John. R. 238; 19 John. R. 300; 4 Rand. R. 359; yet a slight alteration in stating the name is unimportant, if there be no possibility of mistaking the identity of the corporation suing. 12 L. R. 444.

6. It sometimes happens that two different sets of partners carry on business in the same social name, and that one of the partners is a member of both firms. When there is a confusion in this respect, the partners of one firm may, in some cases, be made responsible for the debts of another. Baker v. Charlton, Peake's N. P. Cas. 80; 3 Mart. N. S. 39; 7 East. 210; 2 Bouv. Inst. n. 1477.

7. It is said that in devises if the name be mistaken, if it appear the testator meant a particular corporation, the devise will be good; a devise to " the inhabitants of the south parish," may be enjoyed by the inhabitants of the first parish. 3 Pick. R. 232; 6 S. & R. 11; see also Hob. 33; 6 Co. 65; 2 Cowen, R, 778.

8. As to names which have the same sound, see Bac. Ab. Misnomer, A; 7 Serg & Rawle, 479; Hammond's Analysis of Pleading, 89; 10 East. R. 83; and article Idem Sonans.

9. As to the effect of using those which have the same derivation, see 2 Roll. Ab. 135; 1 W. C. C. R. 285; 1 Chit. Cr. Law 108. For the effect of changing one name, see 1 Rop. Leg. 102; 3 M. & S. 453 Com. Dig. G 1, note x.

10. As to the omission or mistake of the name of a legatee, see 1 Rop. Leg. 132, 147; 1 Supp. to Ves. Jr. 81, 82; 6 Ves. 42; 1 P. Wms. 425; Jacob's R. 464. As to the effect of mistakes in the names of persons in pleading, see Steph. Pl. 319. Vide, generally, 13 Vin. Ab. 13; 15 Vin. Ab. 595; Dane's Ab. Index, h. t.; Roper on Leg. Index, b. t; 8 Com: Dig., 814; 3 Mis. R. 144; 4 McCord, 487; 5 Halst. 230; 3 Mis. R. 227; 1 Pick. 388; Merl. Rep. mot Nom; and article Misnomer.

11. When a person uses a name in making a contract under seal, he will not be permitted to say that it is not his name; as, if he sign and seal a bond " A and B," (being his own and his partner's name,) and he had no authority from bis partner to make such a deed, he cannot deny that bis name is A. & B. 1 Raym. 2; 1 Salk. 214. And if a man describes himself in the body of a deed by the name of James and signs it John, he cannot, on being sued by the latter name, plead that his name is James. 3 Taunt. 505; Cro. Eliz. 897, n. a. Vide 3 P. & D. 271; 11 Ad. & L. 594.

NAMES OF SHIPS. The act of congress of December 31, 1792, concerning the registering and recording of ships or vessels, provides, 3. That every ship or vessel, hereafter to be registered, (except as is hereinafter provided,) shall be registered by the collector of the district in which shall be comprehended the port to which such ship or vessel shall belong at the time of her registry, which port shall be deemed to be that at or nearest to which the owner, if there be but one, or, if more than one, the husband, or acting and managing owner of such ship or vessel, usually resides. And the name of the said ship or vessel, and of the port to which she shall so belong, shall be painted on her stern, on a black ground, in white letters, of not less than three inches in length. And if any ship or vessel of the United States shall be found without having her name, and the name of the port to which she belongs, painted in manner aforesaid, the owner or owners shall forfeit fifty dollars; one half to the person, giving the information thereof, the other half to the use of the United States. 1 Story's L. U. S. 269.

2. And by the act of February 18, 1793, it is directed, 11. That every licensed ship or vessel shall have her name, and the port to which she belongs, painted on her stern, in the manner as is provided for registered ships or vessels; and if any licensed ship or vessel be found without such painting, the owner or owners thereof shall pay twenty dollars. 1 Story's L. U. S. 290.

3. By a resolution of congress, approved, March. 3, 1819, it is resolved, that all the ships of the navy of the United States, now building, or hereafter to be built, shall be named by the secretary of the navy, under the direction of the president of the United States, according to the following rule, to wit: Those of the first class, shall be called after the states of this Union those of the second class, after the rivers and those of the third class, after the principal cities and towns; taking care that no two vessels in the navy shall bear the same name. 3 Story's L. U. S. 1757.

4. When a ship is pleaged, as in the contract of bottomry, it is indispensable that its name should be properly stated; when it is merely the place in which the pledge is to be found, as in respondentia, it should also be stated, but a mistake in this case would not be fatal. 2 Bouv. Inst. n. 1255.

NAMIUM. An old word which signifies the taking or distraining another person's movable goods; 2 Inst. 140; 3 Bl. Com. 149 a distress. Dalr. Feud. Pr. 113.

NARR, pleading. An abbreviation of the word narratio; a declaration in the cause.

NARRATOR. A pleader who draws narrs serviens narrator, a sergeant at law. Fleta, 1. 2, c. 37. Obsolete.

NARROW SEAS, English law. Those seas which adjoin the coast of England. Bac. Ab. Prerogative, B 3.

NATALE. The state of condition of a man acquired by birth.

NATIONAL or PUBLIC DOMAIN. All the property which belongs to the state is comprehended under the name of national or public domain.

2. Care must be taken not to confound the public or national domain, with the national finances, or the public revenue, as taxes, imposts, contributions, duties, and the like, which are not considered as property, and are essentially attached to the sovereignty. Vide Domain; Eminent Domain.

NATIONALITY. The state of a person in relation to the nation in which he was born.

2. A man retains his nationality of origin during bis minority, but, as in the case of his domicil of origin, he may change his nationality upon attaining full age; he cannot, however, renounce his allegiance without permission of the government. See Citizen; Domicil; Expatriation; Naturalization; Foelix, Du Dr. Intern. prive, n. 26; 8 Cranch, 263; 8 Cranch, 253; Chit. Law of Nat. 31 2 Gall. 485; 1 Gall. 545.

NATIONS. Nations or states are independent bodies politic; societies of men united together for the purpose of promoting their mutual safety and advantage by the joint efforts of their combined strength.

2. But every combination of men who govern themselves, independently of all others, will not be considered a nation; a body of pirates, for example, who govern themselves, are not a nation. To constitute a nation another ingredient is required. The body thus formed must respect other nations in general, and each of their members in particular. Such a society has her affairs and her interests; she deliberates and takes resolutions in common; thus becoming a moral person who possesses an understanding and will peculiar to herself, and is susceptible of obligations and rights. Vattel, Prelim. 1, 2; 5 Pet. S. C. R. 52.

3. It belongs to the government to declare whether they will consider a colony which has thrown off the yoke of the mother country as an independent state; and until the government have decided on the question, courts of justice are bound to consider the ancient state of things as remaining unchanged. 1 Johns. Ch. R. 543; 13 John. 141, 561; see 5 Pet. S. C. R. 1; 1 Kent, Com 21; and Body Politic; State.

NATIVES. All persons born within the jurisdiction of the United States, are considered as natives.

2. Natives will be classed into those born before the declaration of our independence, and those born since.

3. - 1. All persons, without regard to the place of their birth, who were born before the declaration of independence, who were in the country at the time it was made, and who yielded a deliberate assent to it, either express or implied, as by remaining in the country, are considered as natives. Those persons who were born within the colonies, and before the declaration of independence, removed into another part of the British dominions, and did not return prior to the peace, would not probably be considered natives, but aliens.

4. - 2. Persons born within the United States, since the Revolution, may be classed into those who are citizens, and those who are not.

5. - 1st. Natives who are citizens are the children of citizens, and of aliens who at the time of their birth were residing within the United States.

6 The act to establish an uniform rule of naturalization, approved April 14, 1802, 4, provides that the children of persons who now are, or have been citizens of the United States, shall, though born out of the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, be considered as citizens of the United States" But, the right of citizenship shall not descend to persons whose fathers have never resided in the United States.

7. - 2d. Natives who are not citizens are, first, the children of ambassadors, or other foreign ministers, who, although born here, are subjects or citizens of the government of their respective fathers. Secondly, Indians, in general, are not citizens. Thirdly, negroes, or descendants of the African race, in general, have no power to vote, and are not eligible to office.

8. Native male citizens, who have not lost their political rights, after attaining the age required by law, may vote for all kinds of officers, and be elected to any office for which they are legally qualified.

9. The constitution of the United States declares that no person, except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be eligible to the office of president or vice-president of the United States. Vide, generally, 2 Cranch, 280; 4 Cranch, 209; 1 Dal. 53; 20 John. 213; 2 Mass. 236, 244, note; 2 Pick. 394, n.; 2 Kent, 35.

NATURAL AFFECTION. The affection which a husband, a father, a brother, or other near relative, naturally feels towards those who are so nearly allied to him, sometimes supplies the place of a valuable consideration in contracts; and natural affection is a good consideration in a deed For example, if a father should covenant without any other consideration to stand seised to the use of his child, the naming him to be of kin implies the consideration of natural affection, whereupon such use will arise. Carth. 138 Dane's Ab. Index, h. t.

NATURAL CHILDREN. In the phraseology of the English or American law, natural children are children born out of wedlock, or bastards, and are distinguished from legitimate children; but in the language of the civil law, natural are distinguished from adoptive children, that is, they are the children of the parents spoken of, by natural procreation. See Inst. lib. 3, tit. 1, 2.√

2. In Louisiana, illegitimate children who have been acknowledged by their father, are called natural children; and those whose fathers are unknown are contradistinguished by the appellation of bastards. Civ. Code of Lo. art. 220. The acknowledgment of an illegitimate child shall be made by a declaration executed before a notary public, in the presenee of two witnesses, whenever it shall not have been made in the registering of the birth or baptism of such child. Id. art. 221. Such acknowledgment shall not be made in favor of the children produced by an incestuous or adulterous connexion. Id. art. 222.

3. Fathers and mothers owe alimony to their natural children, when they are in need. Id. art. 256, 913. In some cases natural children are entitled to the legal succession, of their natural fathers or mothers. Id. art. 911 to 927.

4. Natural children owe alimony to their father or mother, if they are in need, and if they themselves have the means of providing it. Id. art. 256.

5. The father is of right the tutor of his natural children acknowledged by him; the mother is of right the tutrix of her natural child not acknowledged by the father. The natural child, acknowledged by both, has for tutor, first the father; in default of him, the mother. Id. art. 274. See 1 Bouv. Inst. n. 319, et seq.

NATURAL EQUITY. That which is founded in natural justice, in honesty and right, and which arises ex aequo et bono. It corresponds precisely with the definition of justice or natural law, which is a constant and perpetual. will to give to every man what is his. This kind of equity embraces so wide a range, that human tribunals have never attempted to enforce it. Every code of laws has left many matters of natural justice or equity wholly unprovided for, from the difficulty of framing general rules to meet them, from the almost impossibility of enforcing them, and from the doubtful nature of the policy of attempting to give a legal sanction to duties of imperfect obligation, such as charity, gratitude, or kindness. 4 Bouv. Inst. n. 3720.

NATURAL OBLIGATION, Civil law. One which in honor and conscience binds the person who has contracted it, but which cannot be enforeed in a court of justice. Poth. n. 173, and n. 191. See Obligation.

NATURAL PRESUMPTIONS, evidence. Presumptions of fact; those which depend upon their own form and efficacy in generating belief or conviction in the mind, as derived from those connexions which are pointed out by experience; they are independent of any artificial connexions, and differ from mere presumptions of law in this essential respect, that the latter depend on and are a branch of th& particular system of jurisprudence to which they belong; but mere natural presumptions are derived wholly by means of the common experience of mankind, without the aid or control of any particular rule of law, but simply from the course of nature and the habits of society. These presumptions fall within the exclusive province of the jury, who are to pass upon the facts. 3 Bouv. Inst. n. 3064; Greenleaf on Ev. 44.

NATURAL DAY. That space of time included between the rising and the setting of the sun. See Day.

NATURAL FOOL. An idiot; one born without the reasoning powers, or a capacity to acquire them.

NATURAL FRUITS. The natural production of trees, bushes, and other plants, for the use of men and animals, and for the reproduction of such trees, bushes or plants.

2. This expression is used in contradistinction to artificial or figurative fruits; for example, apples, peaches and pears are natural fruits; interest is the fruit of money, and this is artificial.

 
 
 
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