Tauberville v Savage

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Citation: Tauberville v Savage 1796) 1 Mod 3.

This information can be found in the supplementary materials to LAWS1052 - Introducing Law & Justice.

Contents

Background facts

  • The plaintiff insulted the defendant.
  • In response, the defendant put his hand upon his sword and said 'If it were not assize-time, I would not take such language from you' (assize time means that the travelilng judges ('assizes) were in town).

Argument

  • The plaintiff believed that the defendant’s action to place his hand upon his sword constituted assault.

Legal issues

Judgment

  • The defendant’s statement was, in effect, a promise that he would not assault the plaintiff (ie, the statement nullified the threat).
  • The defendant’s words actually showed he did not intend to assault the plaintiff.
  • Hence no assault, since assault requires the intention as well as the act.

References

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