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Related to maxims: Proverbs


n. a collection of legal truisms which are used as "rules of thumb" by both judges and lawyers. They are listed in the codified statutes of most states, and include:

"When the reason of a rule ceases, so should the rule itself"

"He who consents to an act is not wronged by it"

"No one can take advantage of his own wrong"

"No one should suffer by the act of another"

"He who takes the benefit must bear the burden"

"For every wrong there is a remedy"

"Between rights otherwise equal, the earliest is preferred"

"No man is responsible for that which no man can control"

"The law helps the vigilant, before those who sleep on their rights"

"The law respects form less than substance"

"The law never requires impossibilities"

"The law neither does nor requires idle acts"

"The law disregards trifles"

"Particular expressions qualify those which are general"

"That is certain which can be made certain"

"Time does not confirm a void act"

"An interpretation which gives effect is preferred to one which makes void"

"Interpretation must be reasonable"

"Things happen according to the ordinary course of nature and the ordinary habits of life"

References in classic literature ?
Remembering these maxims, the vigorous and beautiful young man knelt down, and requested the good dame to mount upon his back.
Look at the rigid and formal race of old maids--the race whom all despise; they have fed themselves, from youth upwards, on maxims of resignation and endurance.
I was afraid of the bias of those worldly maxims, which she has been too much used to hear.
cried La Fontaine, "if we become bad citizens, it is not through following the maxims of our master.
What government failed to effect, however, with all its patronage and all its agents, was at length brought about by the enterprise and perseverance of a single merchant, one of its adopted citizens; and this brings us to speak of the individual whose enterprise is the especial subject of the following pages; a man whose name and character are worthy of being enrolled in the history of commerce, as illustrating its noblest aims and soundest maxims.
And well do they deserve such honorable estimation; for the maxims of wisdom and virtue which fall from their lips come from as deep a spiritual source, and tend to as lofty a religious aim, as those of the sagest philosophers of old.
A poor man is despised the whole world over; despised as much by a Christian as by a lord, as much by a demagogue as by a footman, and not all the copy-book maxims ever set for ink stained youth will make him respected.

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