Life

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LIFE. The aggregate of the animal functions which resist death. Bichat.
     2. The state of animated beings, while they possess the power of feeling and motion. It commences in contemplation of law generally as soon as the infant is able to stir in the mother's womb; 1 Bl. Com. 129; 3 Inst. 50; Wood's Inst. 11; and ceases at death. Lawyers and legislators are not, however, the best physiologists, and it may be justly suspected that in fact life commences before the mother can perceive any motion of the foetus. 1 Beck's Med. Jur. 291.
     3. For many purposes, however, life is considered as begun from the moment of conception in ventre sa mere. Vide Foetus. But in order to acquire and transfer civil rights the child must be born alive. Whether a child is born alive, is to be ascertained from certain signs which are always attendant upon life. The fact of the child's crying is the most certain. There may be a certain motion in a new born infant which may last even for hours, and yet there may not be complete life. It seems that in order to commence life the child must be born with the ability to breathe, and must actually have breathed. 1 Briand, Med. Leg. 1ere partie, c. 6, art. 1.
     4. Life is presumed to continue at least till one hundred years. 9 Mart. Lo. R. 257 See Death; Survivorship.
     5. Life is considered by the law of the utmost importance, and its most anxious care is to protect it. 1 Bouv. Inst. n. 202-3.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Those are the words of a 60-year-old woman who has seen life. Of course, I made sure that I did not take them to any spots where truants and miscreants were creating havoc.
He has seen life through two very different political prisms and is a powerful voice to preach co-operation over confrontation.
My husband stayed home for four years with our four children from 1994 to 1998, so I've seen life from both sides now.
But that was before a foaling-box, which had also seen life as a tack-room, had been converted back to take an incoming equine resident.
I've seen life at the bottom of this division with Montrose so I'm under no illusions as to how tough a job it is."
COPS actor Jack Marsden has seen life on both sides of the Thin Blue Line, but now word reaches Insider that he fancies himself as a bit of a legal eagle too.
"As a result, 2001 has seen life become more stressful for many consumers as we live increasingly urbanised, hectic lifestyles and rely more on convenience to allow us to pack more into the day."
Thus his most satisfying moments are when these young people who have seen life at its worst feel able to be children.