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

    Fraud; a false representation made with intent to deceive, and relied upon to his damage by the party injured. See 102 Mass. 132, 3 Am. Rep. 440.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    A fraudulent and cheating misrepresentation, artifice or device, used by one or more persons to. deceive and trick another, who is ignorant of the true facts, to the prejudico and damage of the party imposed upon. People v. Chadwick, 143 Cal. 116, 76 Pac. 884; Reynolds v. Palmer (0. Ct) 21 Fed. 433; French v. Vining, 102 Mass. 132, 3 Am. Rep. 440; Swift v. Rounds, 19 R. I. 527, 35 Atl. 45, 33 L. R. A. 561, 61 Am. St. Rep. 791; In re Post, 54 Hun, 634, 7 N. Y. Supp. 438; Civ. Code Mont. 1895, § 2292. A subtle trick or device, whereunto may be referred all manner of craft and collusion used to deceive and defraud another by any means whatsoever, which hath no other or more proper name than deceit to distinguish the offense. [West Symb. § 68;] Jacob. The word "deceit," as well as "fraud," excludes the idea of mistake, and imports knowledge that the artifice or device used to deceive or defraud is untrue. Farwell v. Metcalf, 61 111. 373. In old English law. The name of an original writ, and the action founded on it, which lay to recover damages for any injury committed deceitfully, either in the name of another, (as by bringing an action in another's name, and then suffering a nonsuit, whereby the plaintiff became liable to costs,) or by a fraudulent warranty of goods, or other personal injury committed contrary to good faith and honesty. Reg. Orig. 112-116; Fitzh. Nat. Brev. 95, E, 98. Also the name of a judicial writ which formerly lay to recover lands which had been lost by default by the tenant in a real action, in consequence of his not having been summoned by the sheriff, or by the collusion of his attorney. Rose. Rcal Act 136; 3 Bl. Comm. 166.
    —Deceitful plea. A sham plea; one alleging as facts things which are obviously false on the face of the plea. Gray v. Gidiere, 4 Strob. (S. C.) 443.