|n.||1.||Literally, a befalling; an event that takes place without one's foresight or expectation; an undesigned, sudden, and unexpected event; chance; contingency; often, an undesigned and unforeseen occurrence of an afflictive or unfortunate character; a casualty; a mishap; |
|2.||(Gram.) A property attached to a word, but not essential to it, as gender, number, case.|
|3.||(Her.) A point or mark which may be retained or omitted in a coat of arms.|
|4.||(Log.) A property or quality of a thing which is not essential to it, as whiteness in paper; an attribute.|
|5.||Any accidental property, fact, or relation; an accidental or nonessential; |
|6.||Unusual appearance or effect.|
|Noun||1.||accident - a mishap; especially one causing injury or death|
|2.||accident - anything that happens by chance without an apparent cause|
ACCIDENT. The happening of an event without the concurrence of the will of
the person by whose agency it was caused or the happening of an event
without any human agency; the burning of a house in consequence of a fire
being made for the ordinary purpose of cooking or warming the house, which
is an accident of the first kind; the burning of the same house by lightning
would have been an accident of the second kind. 1 Fonb. Eq. 374, 5, note.
2. It frequently happens that a lessee covenants to repair, in which case he is bound to do so, although the premises be burned down without his fault. 1 Hill. Ab. c. 15, s. 76. But if a penalty be annexed to the covenant, inevitable accident will excuse the former, though not the latter. 1 Dyer, 33, a. Neither the landlord nor the tenant is bound to rebuild a house burned down, unless it has been so expressly agreed. Amb. 619; 1 T. R. 708; 4 Paige, R. 355; 6 Mass. R. 67; 4 M'Cord, R. 431; 3 Kent, Com. 373.
3. In New Jersey, by statute, no action lies against any person on the ground that a fire began in a house or room occupied by him, if accidental. But this does not affect any covenant. 1 N. J. Rev. C. 216.
ACCIDENT, practice. This term in chancery jurisprudence, signifies such
unforeseen events, misfortunes, losses, acts or omissions, as are not the
result of any negligence or misconduct in the party. Francis' Max. M. 120,
p. 87; 1 Story on Eq. Sec. 78.
Jeremy defines it as used in courts of equity, to be "an occurrence in relation to a contract, which was not anticipated by the parties, when the same was entered into, and which gives an undue advantage to one of them over the other in a court of law." Jer. on Eq. 358. This definition is objected to, because as accident may arise in relation to other things besides contracts, it is inaccurate in confining accidents to contracts; besides, it does not exclude cases of unanticipated occurrences, resulting from the negligence or misconduct of the party seeking relief. 1 Story on Eq. Sec. 78, note 1.
2. In general, courts of equity will relieve a party who cannot obtain justice in consequence of an accident, which will justify the interposition of a court of equity. The jurisdiction being concurrent, will be maintained only, first, when a court of law cannot grant suitable relief; and, secondly, when the party has a conscientious title to relief.
3. Many accidents are redressed in a court of law; as loss of deeds, mistakes in receipts and accounts, wrong payments, death, which makes it impossible to perform a condition literally, and a multitude of other contingencies; and many cannot be redressed even in a court of equity; is if by accident a recovery is ill suffered, a contingent remainder destroyed, or a power of leasing omitted in a family settlement. 3 Bl. Comm. 431. Vide, generally, Com. Dig. Chancery, 3 F 8; 1 Fonb. Eq. B. 1, c. 3, s. 7; Coop. Eq. Pl. 129; 1 Chit. Pr. 408; Harr. Ch. Index, h.t.; Dane's Ab. h.t.; Wheat. Dig. 48; Mitf. Pl. Index, h.t.; 1 Madd. Ch. Pr. 23; 10 Mod. R. 1, 3; 3 Chit. Bl. Com. 426, n.