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

    A gift.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    Lat A gift A transfer of the title to property to oDe who receives it without paying for it Vicat. The act by which the owner of a thing voluntarily transfers the title and possession of the same from himself to another person, without any consideration. Its literal translation, "gift" bas acquired in reni law a more limited meaning, being apghed to the conveyance of estates tail. 2 Bl. 'omm. 316; Littleton, § 59; West, Symb. § 254; 4 Cruise, Dig. 51. Classification. By the civil law (adopted into the English and American law) donations are either inter vivos (between living persons) or mortis causa (in anticipation of death.) As to these forme, see infra. A donatio or gift as between living persons is calied donatio mera or pura when it is a simple gift without compulsion or consideration, that ls, resting solely on the generosity of the donor, as in the case of most charitable gifts. It is called donatio remuneratoria when given as a reward for past services, but still not under any legal compulsion, as in the case of pensions and land-grants. It is called donatio sub modo (or modalis) when given for the attninment of some special object or on condition that the donee shall do something not specially for the benefit of the donor, as in the case of the endowment of hospitals, colleges, etc., coupled with the condition that they shall be established and maintained. Mackeld. Rom. Law, § 466; Fisk v. Flores, 43 Tex. 340; Noe v. Card, 14 Cal. 576. The following terms are also used: Donatio condition-alis, a conditional gift; donatio relata, a gift made with reference to some service already done. (Fisk v. Flores, 48 Tex. 340;) donatio stricta et coarctura, a restricted gift, as an estate tail.
    —Donatio inofficiosa. An inofficious (undutiful) gift; a gift of so great a part of the donor's property that the birthright portion of his heirs is diminished. Mackeld. Rom. Law, § 469.
    —Donatio inter vivos. A gift between the living. The ordinary kind of gift by one person to another. 2 Kent, Comm. 438; 2 Steph. Comm. 102. A term derived -from the civil law. Inst. 2, 7, 2. A donation inter vivos (between living persons) is an act by which the donee divests himself at present and irrevocably of the thing given in favor of the donee who accepts it. Civ. Code La. art 1468.
    —Donatio mortis causa. A gift made by a person in sickness, who, apprehending his dissolution near, delivers, or causes to be delivered, to another the possession of any personal goods, to keep as his own in case of the donor's decease. 2 Bl. Comm. 514. The civil law defines it to be a gift under apprehension of death; as when anything is given upon condition that, if the donor dies, the donee shall possess it absolutely, or return it if the donor should survive or should repent of having made the gift, or if the donee should die before the donor. Adams v. Nicholas, 1 Miles (Pat) 109-117. A gift in view of death is one which is made in contemplation, fear, or peril of death, and with intent that it shall tfke effect only in case of the death of the giver. Civ. Code Cal. § ll49. A donation mortis causa (in prospect of death) is an act to take effect when the donor shall no longer exist, by which he disposes of the whole or a part of his property, and which is irrevocable. Civ. Code La. art. 1469.
    —Douatio propter nuptias. A gift on account of marriage. In Roman law, the bridegroom's gift to the bride in antipication of marriage and to secare her dos was called "donatio ante nuptias;" but by an ordinance of Justinian such gift might be made after as well as before marriage, and in that case it was calied "donatio propter nuptias." Mackeld. Rom. Law, § 572.