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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 ?
"Abortion, Execution, and the Consequences of Taking Life" discusses these topics under the banner of taking life from another.
At the end of the conversation, Gervais observed, "That was fantastic - have I blown my image - taking life seriously?"
Yesterday, he said: "I think staying healthy is about not taking life too seriously, not letting things play on your mind.
In recent years of accidents and ill health he was still laughing and, right up until the end, was taking life by the scruff and looking forward to jump racing and son Ian's next winner.
It is scandalous to think that a quarter of the people who should be taking life easier are forced to return to work just to get by.
For a man whose reputation is for taking life rather than saving it, wouldn't it be better to do that than send an astronaut to an uninhabited planet for the sole purpose of sticking the US flag into its arid soil and crowing, "We got here first?"
The on-premise portion will focus on nearly 1,000 sampling events, featuring "Malibu Meter Maids" dressed as Caribbean traffic cops, who will ticket customers accused of taking life too seriously.
Taking Life Imprisonment Seriously in National and International Law, by Dirk van Zyl Smit, is a compelling book that addresses the issue of life sentences.