Definitions from Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition and Ballentine's Law Dictionary as are available for each term in each dictionary.
  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    This word has two meanings in law:
    (1) In the law of the domestic relations, and as to descent and distribution, it is used strictly as the correlative of "parent," and means a son or daughter considered as in relation with the father or mother.
    (2) In the law of negligence, and in laws for the protection of children, etc., it is used as the opposite of "adult," and means the young of the human species, (generally under the age of puberty,) without any reference to parentage and without distinction of sex. Miller v. Finegan, 26 Fla. 29, 7 South. 140, 6 L. R. A. 813.
    —Child's part. A "child's part," which a widow, by statute in some states, is entitled to take hi lieu of dower or the provisi os made for her by will, is a full share to which a child of the decedent would be entitled, subject to the debts of the estate and the cost of administration up to and including distribution. Benedict v. Wil-marth, 46 Fla. 535, 35 South. 84.
    —Natural child. A bastard ; a child born out of lawful wedlock. But in a statute declaring that adopted shall have nil the rights of "natural" children, the word "natural" was used in the sense of "legitimate." Bams v. Allen, 9 Am. Law Reg. (O. St) 747. In Louisiana. Illegitimate children who have been adopted by the father. Civ. Code La. art. 220. In the civil law. A child by natural relation or procreation ; a child by birth, as distinguished from a child by adoption. Inst. 1, 11, pr.; Id. 3, 1, 2; Id. 3, 8, pr. A child by concubinage, in contradistinction to a child by marriage. Cod. 5, 27.
    —Quasi posthumous child. In the civil law. One who, bom during the life of his grandfather or other male ascendant, was not his heir at the time he made his testament, but who by the death of his father became his heir in hls life-time. Inst. 2, 13, 2; Dig. 28, 3, 13.