PRINTING. The art of impressing letters; the art of making books or
papers by impressing legible characters.
2. The right to print is guarantied by law, and the abuse of the right
renders the guilty person liable to punishment. See Libel,; Liberty of the
PRIORITY. Going before; opposed to posteriority. (q. v.)
2. He who has the precedency in time has the advantage in right, is the maxim
of the law; not that time, considered barely in itself, can make any such
difference, but because the whole power over a thing being secured to one
person, this bars all others from obtaining a title to it afterwards. 1 Fonb.
3. In the payment of debts, the United States are entitled to priority when
the debtor is insolvent, or dies and leaves an insolvent estate. The priority
was declared to extend to cases in which the insolvent debtor had made a
vol-untary assignment of all his property, or in which his effects had been
attached as an absconding or absent debtor, on which an act of legal bankruptcy
had been committed. 1 Kent, Com. 243; 1 Law Intell. 219, 251; and the cases
4. Among common creditors, he who has the oldest lien has the preference; it
being a maxim both of law and equity, qui prior est tempore, potior est jure. 2
John. Ch. R. 608. Vide Insolvency; and Serg. Const. La*, Index, h. t.
PRISAGE. The name of an ancient duty taken by the English crown on
wines imported into England. Bac. Ab. Smuggling and Customs, C. 2; Harg. L. Tr.
PRISON. A legal prison is the building designated by law, or used by
the sheriff, for the confinement, or detention of those whose persons are
judicially ordered to be kept in custody. But in cases of necessity, the sheriff
may make his own house, or any other place, a prison. 6 John. R. 22. 2. An
illegal prison is one not authorized by law, but established by private
authority; when the confinement is illegal, every place where the party is
arrested is a prison; as, the street, if he be detained in passing along. 4 Com.
Dig. 619; 2 Hawk. P. C. c. 18, s. 4; 1 Buss. Cr. 378; 2 Inst. 589.
PRISON BREAKING. The act by which a prisoner, by force and violence,
escapes from a place where he is lawfully in custody. This is an offence at
2. To constitute this offence, there must be, 1. A lawful commitment of the
prisoner; vide Regular and Irregular process. 2. An actual breach with force and
violence of the prison, (q. v.) by the prisoner himself or by others with his
privity and procurement. Russ. & Ry. 458; 1 Russ. Cr. 380. 3. The prisoner
must escape. 2 Hawk. P. C. c. 18, s. 12; vide 1 Hale P. C. 607; 4 Bl. Com. 130;
2 Insts. 500; 2 Swift's Dig. 327; Alis. Prin. 555; Dalloz, Dict. mot Effraction.
PRISONER One held in confinement against his will.
2. Prisoners are of two kinds, those lawfully confined, and those unlawfully
3. Lawful prisoners are either prisoners charged with crimes, or for a civil
liability. Those charged with crimes are either persons accused and not tried,
and these are considered innocent, and are therefore entitled to be treated with
as little severity as possible, consistently with the certain detention of their
persons; they are entitled to their discharge on bail, except in capital cases,
when the proof is great; or those who have been convicted of crimes, whose
imprisonment, and the mode of treatment they experience, is intended as a
punishment, these are to be treated agreeably to the requisitions of the law,
and in the United States, always with humanity. Vide Penitentiary. Prisoners in
civil cases, are persons arrested on original or mesne process, and these may
generally be discharged on bail; and prisoners in execution, who cannot be
discharged, except under the insolvent laws.
4. Persons unlawfully confined, are those who are not detained by virtue of
some lawful, judicial, legislative; or other proceeding. They are entitled to
their immediate discharge on habeas corpus. For the effect of a contract entered
into by a prisoner, see 1 Salk. 402, n.; 6 Toull. 82.
5. By tho resolution. of congress, of September 23, 1789, it was recommended
to the legislatures of the several states, to pass laws, making it expressly the
duty of the keepers of those jails to receive and safely keep therein, all
persons committed under the authority of the United States, until they shall be
discharged by due course of the laws thereof, under the like penalties as in the
case of prisoners committed under the authority of such states respectively. And
by the resolution of March 3, 1791, it is provided, that if any state shall not
have complied with the above recommendation the marshal in such state, under the
direction of the judge of the district, shall be authorized to hire a convenient
place to serve as a temporary jail. See 9 Cranch, R. 80.
PRISONER OF WAR. One who has been captured while fighting under the
banner of some state. He is a prisoner, although never coufined in a prison.
2. In modern times, prisoners are treated with more humanity than formerly;
the individual captor has now no personal right to his prisoner. Prisoners are
under the superintendence of the government, and they are now frequently
exchanged. Vide 1 Kent, Com . 14.
3. It is a general rule, that a prisoner is out of the protection of the laws
of the state, so for, that he can have no civil remedy under them, and he can,
therefore, maintain no action. But his person is protected against all unlawful
acts. Bac. Ab. Abatement, b. 3; Bac. Ab. Aliens, D.
PRIVATE. Not general, as a private act of the legislature; not in
office; as, a private person, as well as an officer, may arrest a felon;
individual, as your private interest; not public, as a private way, a private
PRIVATEER war. A vessel owned by one or by a society of private
individuals, armed and equipped at his or their expense, for the purpose of
carrying on a maritime war, by the authority of one of the belligerent parties.
2. For the purpose of encouraging the owners of private armed vessels, they
are usually allowed to appropriate to themselves the property they capture, or,
at least, a large proportion of it. 1 Kent, Com. 96; Posh. du Dr. de Propr. n.
90 et seq. See 2 Dall. 36; 3 Dall. 334; 4 Cranch, 2; 1 Wheat. 46; 3 Wheat. 546;
2 Gall. R. 19; Id. 526; 1 Mason, R. 365 3 Wash. C. C. R. 209 2 Gall. R. 56; 5
Wheat. 338; Mann. Com. 1.16.
PRIVEMENT ENCEINTE. This term is used to signify that a woman is
pregnant, but not quick with child; (q. v.) and vide Wood's Inst. 662; Enceinte;
PRIVIES. Persons who are partakers, or have an interest in any action
or thing, or any relation to another. Wood, Inst. b. 2, c. 3, p. 255; 2 Tho. Co.
Lit. 506 Co. Lit. 271, a.
2. There aye several kinds of privies, namely, privies in blood, as the heir
is to the ancestor; privies in representation, as is the executor or
administrator to the deceased privies in estate, as the relation between the
donor-and donee, lessor and lessee; privies in respect to contracts; and privies
on account of estate and contract together. Tho. Co. Lit. 506; Prest. Con v. 327
to 345. Privies have also been divided into privies in fact, and privies in law.
8 Co. 42 b. Vide Vin. Ab. Privily; 5 Coin. Dig. 347; Ham. on Part. 131; Woodf.
Land. & Ten. 279, 1 Dane's Ab. c. 1, art. 6.
PRIVILEGE, civil law. A right which the nature of a debt gives to a
creditor, and which entitles him to be preferred before other creditors. Louis.
Code, art. 3153; Dict. de Juris. art. Privilege: Domat, Lois Civ. liv. 2, t. 1,
s. 4, n. 1.
2. Creditors of the same rank of privileges, are paid in concurrence, that
is, on an equal footing. Privileges may exist either in movables, or immovables,
or both at once. They are general or special, on certain movables. The debts
which are privileged on all the movables in general, are the following, which
are paid in this order. 1. Funeral charges. 2. Law charges, which are such as
are occasioned by the prosecution of a suit before the courts. But this name
applies more particularly to costs, which the party cast has to pay to the party
gaining the cause. It is in favor of these only that the law grants the
privilege. 3. Charges, of whatever nature, occasioned by the last sickness,
concurrently among those to whom they are due; see Last sickness. 4. The wages
of servants for the year past, and so much as is due for the current year. 5.
Supplies of provisions made to the debtor or his family during the last six
months, by retail dealers, such as bakers, butchers, grocers; and during the
last year by keepers of boarding houses and taverns. 6. The salaries of clerks,
secretaries, and other persons of that kind. 7. Dotal rights, due to wives by
3. The debts which are privileged on particular movables, are, 1. The debt of
a workman or artizan for the price of his labor, on the movable which he has
repaired, or made, if the thing continues still in his possession. 2. That debt
on the pledge which is in the creditor's possession. 3. The carrier's charges
and accessory expenses on the thing carried. 4. The price due on movable
effects, if they are yet in the possession of the purchaser; and the like. See
4. Creditors have a privilege on immovables, or real estate in some, cases,
of which the following are instances: 1. The vendor on the estate by him sold,
for the payment of the price, or so much of it as is due whether it be sold on
or without a credit. 2. Architects and undertakers, bricklayers and other
workmen employed in constructing, rebuilding or repairing houses, buildings, or
making other works on such houses, buildings, or works by them constructed,
rebuilt or repaired. 3. Those who have supplied the owner with materials for the
construction or repair of an edifice or other work, which he has erected or
repaired out of these materials, on the edifice or other work constructed or
repaired. Louis. Code, art. 3216. See, generally, as to privilege. Louis. Code,
tit. 21; Code Civ. tit. 18; Dict. de Juris. tit. Privilege; Lien; Last sickness;
PRIVILEGE, mar. law. An allowance to the master of a ship of the
general nature with primage, (q. v.) being compensation or rather a gratuity
customary in certain trades, and which the law assumes to be a fair and
equitable allowance, because the contract on both sides is made under the
knowledge such usage by the parties. 3 Chit. Com. Law, 431.
PRIVILEGE, rights. This word, taken its active sense, is a particular
law, or a particular disposition of the law, which grants certain special
prerogatives to some persons, contrary to common right. In its passive sense, it
is the same prerogative granted by the same particular law.
2. Examples of privilege may be found in all systems of law; members of
congress and of the several legislatures, during a certain time, parties and
witnesses while attending court; and coming to and returning from the same;
electors, while going to the election, remaining on the ground, or returning
from the same, are all privileged from arrest, except for treason, felony or
breach of the peace.
3. Privileges from arrest for civil cases are either general and absolute, or
limited and qualified as to time or place.
4. - 1. In the first class may be mentioned ambassadors, and their servants,
when the debt or duty has been contracted by the latter since they entered into
the service of such ambassador; insolvent debtors duly discharged under the
insolvent laws; in some places, as in Pennsylvania, women for any debt by them
contracted; and in general, executors and administrators, when sued in their
representative character, though they have been held to bail. 2 Binn. 440.
5. - 2. In the latter class may be placed, 1st. Members of congress this
privilege is strictly personal, and is not only his own, or that of his
constituent, but also that of the house of which he is a member, which every man
is bound to know, and must take notice of. Jeff. Man. 3; 2 Wils. R. 151; Com.
Dig. Parliament, D. 17. The time during which the privilege extends includes all
the period of the session of congress, and a reasonable time for going to, and
returning from the seat of government. Jeff. Man. 3; Story, Const. 856 to 862; 1
Kent, Com. 221; 1 Dall. R. 296. The same privilege is extended to the members of
the different state legislatures.
6. - 2d. Electors under the constitution and laws of the United States, or of
any state, are protected from arrest for any civil cause, or for any crime
except treason, felony, or a breach of the peace, eundo, morando, et redeundo,
that is, going to, staying at, or returning from the election.
7. - 3d. Militia men, while engaged in the performance of military duty,
under the laws, and eundo, morando et redeundo.
8. - 4th. All persons who, either necessarily or of right are attending any
court or forum of justice, whether as judge, juror, party interested or witness,
and eundo, morando et redeundo. See 6 Mass. R, 245; 4 Dall. R. 329, 487; 2 John.
R. 294; 1 South. R. 366; 11 Mass. R. 11; 3 Cowen, R. 381; 1 Pet. C. C. R. 41.
9. Ambassadors are wholly exempt from arrest for civil or criminal cases.
Vide Ambassador. See, generally, Bac. Ab. h. t.; 2 Rolle's Ab. 272; 2 Lilly's
Reg. 369; Brownl. 15; 13 Mass. R. 288; 1 Binn. R. 77; 1 H. Bl. 686; Bouv. Inst.
Index, h. t.
PRIVILEGED COMMUNICATIONS. Those statements made by a client to his
counsel or attorney, or solicitor, in confidence, relating to some cause Or
action then pending or in contemplation.
2. Such communications cannot be disclosed without the consent of the client.
6 M. & W. 587; 8 Dow]. 774; 2 Yo. & C. 82; 1 Dowl. N. S. 651; 9 Mees.
& W. 508. See Confidential communication.
PRIVILEGIUM CLERICALE. The same as benefit of clergy.
PRIVITY. The mutual or successive relationship to the same rights of
property. 1 Greenl. Ev. 189; 6 How. U. S. R. 60.
PRIVITY OF CONTRACT. The relation which subsists between two
contracting parties. Hamm. on Part. 182.
2. From the nature of the covenant entered into by him, a lessee has both
privity of contract and of estate; and though by an assignment of his lease he
may destroy his privity of estate, still the privity of contract remains, and he
is liable on his covenant notwithstanding the assignment. Dougl. 458, 764; Vin.
Ab. h. t. 6 How. U. S. R. 60. Vide Privies.
PRIVITY OF ESTATE. The relation which subsists between a landlord and
2. It is a general rule that a termor cannot transfer the tenancy or privity
of estate between himself and his landlord, without the latter's consent: an
assignee, who comes in only in privity of estate, is liable only while he
continues to be legal assignee; that is, while in possession under the
assignment. Bac. Ab. Covenant, E 4; Woodf. L. & T. 279; Vin. Ab. h: t.;
Hamm. on Part. 132. Vide Privies.
PRIVY. One who is a partaker, or has an interest in any action, matter
PRIVY COUNCIL, Eng. law. A council of state composed of the king and
of such persons as he may select.
PRIVY SEAL, Eng. law. A seal which the king uses to such grants or
things as pass the great seal. 2 Inst. 554.
PRIVY VERDICT. One which is delivered privily to a judge out of court.