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

    The recognition which one nation allows within its territory to the legislative, executive, or judicial acts of another nation. See 159 U. S. 113, 40 L. Ed. 95, 15 Sup. Ct Rep. 987.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    Courtesy; complaisance; respect; a willingness to grant a privilege, not as a matter of right, but out of deference and good will.
    —Comity of nations. The most appropriate phrase to express the true foundation and extent of the obligation of the laws of one nation within the territories of another. It is derived altogether from the voluntary consent of the latter; and it is inadmisible when it is contrary to its known policy, or prejudicial to its inter-ests. In the silence of any positive rule affirming or denying or restraining the operation of foreign laws, courts of justice presume the tacit adoption of them by their own government, unless repugnant to its policy, or prejudicial to its interests. It is not the comity of the courts, but the comity of the nation, which is administered and ascertained in the same way, and guided by the same reasoning, by which all other principles of the municipal law are ascertained and guided. Story. Laws, § 38. The comity of nations (comitas gentium) is that body of rules which states observe towards one another from courtesy or mutual convenience, although they do not form part of international law. Holtz. Enc. s. v. Hilton v. Guyot, 159 U. S. 113, 16 Sup. Ot. 139, 40 L. Ed. 95; Fisher v. Fielding, 67 Conn. 91, 34 Atl. 714, 32 It. R. A. 236, 52 Am. St. Ren. 270; People v. Martin. 175 N. Y. 315, 67 N. E. 589, 96 Am. St. Rep. 628
    —Judicial comity. The principle in accordance with which the courts of one state or jurisdiction will give effect to the laws and judicial decisions of another, not as a matter of obligation, but out of deference and respect Franzen v. Zimmer, 90 Hun, 103, 35 N. Y. Supp. 612; Stowe v. Bank (C. -C.) 92 Fed. 96; Mast v. Mfg. Co... 177 U. S. 485, 20 Sup. Ct. 708, 44 In Ed. 856; Conklin v. Shipbuilding Co. (C. C.) 123 Fed. 916.