breach of promise

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breach of promise

n. historically the dumping of a female fiancee by her intended husband after he had proposed marriage and she had accepted. She was entitled to file a suit for damages for the embarrassment of the broken engagement. Such lawsuits were gradually outlawed in various states and no longer exist. (See: breach)

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breach of promise

(formerly) failure to carry out one's promise to marry. In Scots law and other civilian jurisdictions, breach of a unilateral promise maybe actionable, absent consideration or estoppel.
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
1964) (contrasting the woman who "knows full well that she is entering into an immoral and meretricious relationship" in a standard breach-of-promise case with "the good faith supposed change of status on the part of the woman deceived"); Snyder v.
Susie Steinbach, in her study of English breach-of-promise cases, has found that juries routinely took such preparations into account: