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The state of an individual whose mind is affected by the consumption of alcohol.

Drunkenness is a consequence of drinking intoxicating liquors to such an extent as to alter the normal condition of an individual and significantly reduce his capacity for rational action and conduct. It can be asserted as a defense in civil and criminal actions in which the state of mind of the defendant is an essential element to be established in order to obtain legal relief.

DRUNKENNESS. Intoxication with strong liquor.
     2. This is an offence generally punished by local regulations, more or less severely.
     3. Although drunkenness reduces a man to a temporary insanity, it does not excuse him or palliate his offence, when he commits a crime during a fit of intoxication, and which is the immediate result of it. When the act is a remote consequence, superinduced by the antecedent drunkenness of the party, as in cases of delirium tremens or mania a potu, the insanity excuses the act. 5 Mison's R. 28; Amer. Jurist, vol. 3, p. 5-20; Martin and Yeager's. R. 133, 147;. Dane's Ab. Index, h.t.; 1 Russ. on Cr. 7; Ayliffe's Parerg. 231 4 Bl. Com. 26.
     4. As there must be a will and intention in order to make a contract, it follows, that a man who is in such a state of intoxication as not to know what he is doing, may avoid a contract entered into by him while in this state. 2 Aik. Rep. 167; 1 Green, R. 233; 2 Verm. 97; 1 Bibb, 168; 3 Hayw. R. 82; 1 Hill, R. 313; 1 South. R. 361; Bull. N. P. 172; 1 Ves. 19; 18 Ves. 15; 3 P. Wms. 130, n. a; Sugd. Vend. 154; 1 Stark. 126; 1 South. R. 361; 2 Hayw. 394; but see 1 Bibb, R. 406; Ray's Med. Jur. ch. 23, 24; Fonbl. Eq. B. 2, 3; 22 Am. Jur. 290; 1 Fodere, Med. Leg. Sec. 215. Vide Ebriosity; Habitua. drunkard.

References in periodicals archive ?
15) The first DWI law in the nation originated in New York State in 1890--section 158 of the former Highway Law--which provided: "No person owning any carriage for the [conveyance] of passengers, running or traveling upon any highway or road, shall employ, or continue in employment, any person to drive such carriage, who is addicted to drunkeness, or to the excessive use of spiritous liquor.
There was some drunkeness but in today's schemes, drink is the least of it.
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As an old man's painting, The Drunkeness of Noah is as elegaic as Titian's late Pieta in the Accademia, Venice: an extraordinary painterly meditation on the frailty of the human condition and the enfeeblement of old age.
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Drunkeness and sloth were not tolerated by Twinn, and membership on the reserve was, and still is, limited to those who will work and stay sober.
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However, individual actitives prevailed, resulting in "cliquism" and a "lack of discipline:" drunkeness, sexual libertinage, brawls as well as--in border areas and at the cruises--smuggling and even contact with resistance groups (cf.
But the thought fades in the fog of his drunkeness, and, a few lines after, he levels accusations at his father, via Richard III, then falls back on Rossetti: