The DICT Development Group
1 definition found
From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :
GIST, pleading. Gist of the action is the essential ground or object of it,
in point of law, and without which there is no cause of action. Gould on Pl.
c. 4, Sec. 12. But it is observable that the substance or gist of the action
is not always the principal cause of the plaintiff Is complaint in point of
fact, nor that on which he recovers all or the greatest part of his damages.
2. It frequently happens that upon that part of his declaration which
contains the substance or gist of the, action, he only recovers nominal
damages, and he gets his principal satisfaction on account of matter
altogether collateral thereto. A familiar instance of this is the case where
a father sues the defendant for a trespass for the seduction of his
daughter. The gist of the action is the trespass, and the loss of his
daughter's services, but the collateral cause is the injury done to his
feelings, for which the principal damages are given. In stating the
substance or gist of the action, every thing must be averred which is
necessary to be proved at the trial. Vide 1 Vin. Ab. 598; 2 Phil. Ev. 1,
note. See Bac. Abr. Pleas, B; Doct. P. 85. See Damages, special, in
pleading; 1 Vin. At. 598; 2 Phil. Ev. 1, n.
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