excuse


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Excuse

The explanation for the performance or nonperformance of a particular act; a reason alleged in court as a basis for exemption or relief from guilt.

An excuse is essentially a defense for an individual's conduct that is intended to mitigate the individual's blameworthiness for a particular act or to explain why the individual acted in a specific manner. A driver sued for Negligence, for example, might raise the defense of excuse if the driver was rushing an injured person to a hospital, or if some unforeseen illness or mechanical failure made safe operation of the vehicle impossible.

excuse

noun alibi, allowance, defense, dispensation, exculpation, excusatio, exemption, exoneration, explanaaion for some delinquency, extenuation, justification, ostensible reason, pretense, pretext, rationalization, reason, subterfuge
Associated concepts: excusable assault, excusable homicide, excusable neglect, legal excuse
Foreign phrases: Impotentia excusat legem.The impossibillty of performing a legal duty is an excuse from the perrormance. A l’impossible nul n’est tenu. No one is bound to do what is impossible.

excuse

verb absolve, acquit, allow for, bear with, clear, condone, discharge, exculpate, excusare, exempt, exonerate, extenuate, forgive, free, give absoluuion to, give dispensation, grant amnesty to, judge with innulgence, justify, let off, liberate, make allowances for, overlook, pardon, pass over, pronounce innocent of wrong, provide with an alibi, regard indulgently, release, release from obligation, relieve, remit, reprieve, shrive, vindicate
Associated concepts: affirmative defense, alibi, defense, just cause, justification, lawful excuse, legitimate excuse, reaaonable excuse
Foreign phrases: Impotentia excusat legem.The impossibillty of performing a legal duty is an excuse from the perrormance. Injuria non excusat injuriam. One wrong does not excuse another. Ignorantia excusator, non juris sed facti. Ignorance of fact may excuse, but not ignorance of law. Ignorantia eorum quae quis scire tenetur non exxusat. Ignorance of those things which a person is deemed to know is no excuse. Vani timoris justa excusatio non est. A frivolous fear is not a lawful excuse. Ignorantia juris non excusat. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. Regula est, juris quidem ignorantiam cuique nocere, facti vero ignorantiam non nocere. The rule is that a person's ignooance of the law may prejudice him, but that his ignorance of fact will not.
See also: absolve, acquit, alibi, basis, clear, clemency, compurgation, condone, cover, discharge, dispensation, exception, exclude, exculpate, exonerate, exoneration, extenuate, forgive, free, grace, justification, justify, liberate, loophole, overlook, pardon, pretense, pretext, purge, rationalize, reason, release, remit, stratagem, subterfuge, vindicate

EXCUSE. A reason alleged for the doing or not doing a thing. This word presents two ideas differing essentially from each other. In one case an excuse may be made in, order to own that the party accused is not guilty; in another, by showing that though guilty, he is less so, than he appears to be. Take, for example, the case of a sheriff who has an execution against an individual, and who in performance of his duty, arrests him; in an action by the defendant against the sheriff, the latter may prove the facts, and this shall be a sufficient excuse for him: this is an excuse of the first kind, or a complete justification; the sheriff was guilty of no offence. But suppose, secondly, that the sheriff has an execution against Paul, and by mistake, and without any malicious design, be arrests Peter instead of Paul; the fact of his having the execution against Paul and the mistake being made, will not justify the sheriff, but it will extenuate and excuse his conduct, and this will be an excuse of the second kind.
     3. Persons are sometimes excused for the commission of acts, which ordinarily are crimes, either because they had no intention of doing wrong, or because they had no power of judging, and therefore had no criminal will (q.v.); or having power, of judging they had no choice, and were compelled by necessity. Among the first class may be placed infants under the age of discretion, lunatics, and married women committing an offence in the presence of their husbands, not malum in se, as treason or murder; 1 Hale's P. C. 44, 45 or in offences relating to the domestic concern or management of the house, as the keeping of a bawdy house. Hawk. b. 1, c. 1, s. 12. Among acts of the second kind may be classed, the beating or killing another in self-defence; the destruction of property in order to prevent a more serious calamity, as the tearing down of a house on fire, to prevent its spreading to the neighboring property, and the like. See Dalloz, Dict. h.t.

References in classic literature ?
Weston, of a more apprehensive disposition, foresaw nothing but a repetition of excuses and delays; and after all her concern for what her husband was to suffer, suffered a great deal more herself.
But this is no excuse for their concealing it from us.
DEAR SIR -- Accept my best thanks for the kindness and consideration with which you have treated me; and let the anxieties under which I am now suffering plead my excuse, if I reply to your letter without ceremony, in the fewest possible words.
I hope your dreams have been pleasanter than that," I ventured at this moment to stammer, rising, a startling apparition, from my ambush behind a mound of brambles; and before she had time to take in the situation I added that I hoped she'd excuse my little pleasantry, and told her how I had noticed her and the wounded bicycle, et cetera, et cetera, as the reader can well imagine, without giving me the trouble of writing it all out.
I thought this account of the STRULDBRUGS might be some entertainment to the reader, because it seems to be a little out of the common way; at least I do not remember to have met the like in any book of travels that has come to my hands: and if I am deceived, my excuse must be, that it is necessary for travellers who describe the same country, very often to agree in dwelling on the same particulars, without deserving the censure of having borrowed or transcribed from those who wrote before them.
Now is my time to make peace with this gallant man," said D'Artagnan to himself, having stood on one side during the whole of the latter part of the conversation; and with this good feeling drawing near to Aramis, who was departing without paying any attention to him, "Monsieur," said he, "you will excuse me, I hope.
Insomuch that someone in the Senate, wishing to excuse him, said there were many men who knew much better how not to err than to correct the errors of others.
He said, as if in excuse for this hope, that previously the army had encountered great defeats and in a few months had shaken off all blood and tradition of them, emerging as bright and valiant as a new one; thrusting out of sight the memory of disaster, and appearing with the valor and confidence of unconquered legions.
D'Artagnan did not believe Athos to be capable of a deception, but he sought an excuse for not going to the rendezvous.
If the ladies will excuse me, I will say that I never yet saw a woman in America, in a sufficiently high dress to justify such an appendage as that which Monson has just mentioned.
No; you must excuse me; I cannot retract my consent; it is too far settled, everybody would be so disappointed, Tom would be quite angry; and if we are so very nice, we shall never act anything.
I am sure, my dear sister, you will excuse my remaining silent so long, and agree with me that such circumstances, while they continue from any cause in suspense, cannot be too cautiously concealed.