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of the holders." "The payment of monies assu. by policies in other assu. offices will be guaranteed on payment of a very small amount, either ann. or otherwise, thereby rendering such policies absolute." Mr. T. H. Cooper was Act. and Sec. In 1857 bus. was trans. to City of Lond., and in 1859 went over with last-named Co. to Eagle. ABSOLUTE REVERSIONARY AND ANNUITY Co.-A project under this title was regis. in 1860 by Mr. Tobiah Pepper, but it did not advance far beyond the title. ABSOLUTE SECURITY LIFE ASSU. INST.-A Co. under this title was projected in 1849 by Mr. Edward Morton, shorthand writer; but no step was taken beyond prov. regis. ABSOLUTE SECURITY LIFE AND FIRE INS. Co., founded in Lond. in 1852, and died during the same year. The promoter was Mr. G. R. H. Dension, of whom we shall give some account hereafter. The Cap. was said to be £100,000 in 50,000 shares of 2-deposit 10s. per share. The chief office was at 32, Gt. Coram St., Russell Sq., and there were branch offices at Newport, Mons., and Birmingham. The names of the Directors were used without the sanction of the parties; and, indeed, the whole thing was either a bubble or a swindle. We do not find that it was even prov. regis. ; although a scheme with the same title had been so regis. in 1849. ABSOLUTE SECURITY LIFE POLICIES.-A Life policy to be absolutely secure in the hands of its holder must have at least three essentials: it must be unforfeitable, unconditional, and unchallengeable. "When it is issued on these conditions, and acquires in proportion to the number of prems. paid a certain fixed value, either rev. or immediate, the amount of which can always be known by a mere inspection of the Tables printed upon it, it becomes a negociable security of the highest order."-Ins. Record. It wants one other condition, at least of equal importance with any yet named: It must be issued by an office thoroughly sound and unimpeachable. All these conditions being granted, there are many who doubt the propriety of such policies on account of "moral hazard." We do not propose to discuss that aspect of the question here.
In 1869 the Prudential announced a scheme of "Absolute Security Assu.," which is still in force. It is a modification of the "Ten prem. plan."
ABSOLUTE TOTAL LOSS.-An absolute total loss takes place when the subject ins. wholly perishes, or its recovery is rendered irretrievably hopeless, as for example, when a vessel founders at sea, or is captured, and condemned as a prize.-Arnould; McArthur. ABSTINENCE.-The influence of abstinence on the duration of life will come before us in a variety of forms, more particularly when we treat of LONGEVITY. It will be convenient to state here, that in these pages we shall not only treat of all the known causes which produce or accelerate DEATH; but we shall also mention all known or supposed causes of an opposite tendency. We shall notice only a few of the recorded cases ancient or modern of remarkable abstinence. Pliny said: A man may live seven or even eleven days without meat or drink. St. Anthony lived to the age of 105, on 12 oz. of bread daily. James the Hermit lived in the same manner to the age of 104. St. Epithanius lived thus to 115. Simeon the Stylite to 112; and Kentigern, commonly called St. Mungo, lived by similar means to 185.-Spottiswood. [FASTING.] [TEMPERANCE.] ABSTRACT OF ACTUARIAL REPORT.-The Life Assu. Cos. Act, 1870, requires a return
under this head to be made. See ACTUARIAL REPORT.
ABSTRACT OF TITLE. An epitome of the evidence of ownership. ACCEPTANCE. The letter or other similar document agreeing to accept a proposal for a Life Assurance is technically styled an "Acceptance." It is customary to include in this certain stipulations, such as, for instance, that the risk is not undertaken until payment of the premium; that any material change affecting the health of the life occurring in the interval between the issue of the acceptance and the payment of premium is to be notified; that after a limited number of days a fresh medical report may be demanded.—Ins. Agent. ACCIDENT.-This word occurs in various ways in connexion with the business of Ins.; its meaning is defined by several leading authorities as follows:-Casualty; unforeseen event.-Johnson. That which falls, or happens, or occurs to.-Richardson. Chance ; an unessential quality or property.-Chambers. An event that takes place without one's foresight or expectation; an event that proceeds from an unknown cause, or is an unusual effect of a known cause, and therefore not expected; chance, casualty, contingency.Webster. Accident excludes the idea of design.-Worcester. An extraordinary incident; something not expected.-Law Dict. In Valin's famous Commentary we find the following: Insurers are responsible only for such damages as happen through casual or unavoidable accidents; or from voluntary acts which have a just and reasonable cause, such as to avoid greater and more imminent danger; and in general for all accidents however extraordinary, if there be no restriction by an express clause. But an accident is not that which happens through the defects or perishable nature of the thing insured, or through the act or fault of the proprietor, freighter, or master.
A modern writer of considerable authority says:-The foundation of claims on underwriters is accident. The damage which the vessel sustains must be something extra to the ordinary events, to the ordinary waste and decay which all shipping is subject to.-Hopkins' Handbook of Average. These remarks were applied to Marine Ins. only, but the principle which is embodied is easily discoverable, and should be extended to other branches of Ins. In the Act of Anne (1707) for "the better preventing mischief that may happen by Fire,” while servants are fined severely for occasioning fires through negligence, it is provided
(sec. 6) that no action shall be prosecuted against any person in whose house or chamber any fire accidentally begins, nor should any recompense be made by such person for any damage suffered or occasioned thereby. The same principle is incorporated in our more modern law upon the subject.
By the Code Napoléon (sec. 1733), the lessee of a house is answerable for a fire, unless he can prove that the same happened by accident, or causes beyond his control.
In Accident Ins. it is of the very essence of the contract that the cause of injury be purely accidental, and that such injuries alone be recognized as are the direct result of the accident. [NEGLIGENCE.]
ACCIDENT OR NEGLIGENCE, DEATHS FROM.-These rank in the Reg.-Gen. classification as Order I, of the class of VIOLENT DEATHS, and embrace Fractures and Contusions, Gunshot Injuries, Cuts and Stabs, Burns and Scalds, Poison, Drowning, Suffocation, and otherwise, making in all eight enumerated forms, each of which will be again spoken of under its proper head.
The deaths from Accidental Violence are far more numerous than those not acquainted with the subject would imagine. It is only since the General Registration Act came into operation (1837) that we have been enabled to obtain even an approximate idea of their extent. The first return was for the year 1838, when the deaths under this head in E. and W. were 11,727, of which 8,359 of those killed were males, and 3,368 females. In 1839 the total deaths were 11,632 in about the like proportions. In 1840, 11,594; in 1841, 11, 100; in 1842, 11,092. We then have no return until 1847, when they had increased to 12,917. Since that date the returns have been made regularly, and are as follows:Deaths in England and Wales from Accidental Violence annually from 1848, distinguishing the sexes:
These results present a wonderful uniformity, and indeed establish the fact that the law of average obtains as fully in this class of deaths as in those resulting from what are usually termed natural causes. It will be observed, however, that the increase, which has been very great during the last five years, is chiefly in the males. The females have fluctuated very little during the period under observation.
An analysis of the deaths by Accidental Violence in 1840 furnished the following details:-Out of 7,152 males 3,268 were under 20, and 3,884 above. Out of 2,828 females 1,996 were under 20, and 832 above. Lancashire and Cheshire presented the highest totals for both males and females. In those counties united the death-rate from this cause was, for males 1,098, for females 459 to one million living. In Lond. alone no less than 1,016 persons were killed that year, of whom 711 were males, and 305 females. The deaths from accidents were, therefore, for males 821, and females 310 to one million living. The causes of death were thus classified: Mechanical injuries 3,305, Chemical injuries 3,245, Drowning, etc., 2,297.
The Reg.-Gen., in his 6th R. (1842), thus drew attention to this subject :
The violent deaths in England appear to be nearly twice as frequent as in other countries of Europe from which returns have been procured. The coroners' informations, although not made at present on a uniform plan, furnish many valuable facts, and when compared with the occupations and other circumstances recorded in the registers, or ascertained at the census, become doubly interesting. . . it is very desirable that in all cases in which inquests are held the coroners should instruct the juries to state in their verdicts with greater minuteness than at present the cause of death; recording more in detail the nature of the injury, and the circumstances in which the death happened.
In his 19th R. (1856) there is a most careful analysis of the deaths of this class for the five years 1852-56. The total deaths in that period were 68,554, of which 50,287 occurred to males, and 18,267 to females. 20,786 deaths were occasioned by mechanical injuries, 19,131 by suffocation in various forms, including drowning, 15,226 arose from chemical injuries, 5,328 from violence in forms not particularized; 4,927 arose from coal mines, and 756 from other mines. The remaining 2,400 arose from railways. annual average from these several causes was: Mechanical injuries, 4, 157; Drowning, etc., 3,826; Chemical injuries, 3,045; Violence, 1,065; Coal mines, 985; other mines, 151; Railways, 480.
In Dr. Farr's letter to the Reg.-Gen., in the same R., the following details are given regarding the year 1856. The mort. from violent causes was nearly 8 in 10,000 living, and nearly 4 in 100 deaths were by violence; 2,919 deaths were from burns and scalds ;
2,681 were from drowning; and the deaths at sea were not included in the registers ; 5,433 deaths were from fractures and contusions. He says:
The progress of science has created new forces often fatal, and has produced new substances, of which our forefathers had no knowledge. Machinery is organized on a large scale, so that the lives of numbers of men are liable to be destroyed, not by malicious intent, but by the negligence of other men who have their lives in charge.
He adds: "1,107 persons are killed annually by horses and horse conveyances;❞— more than double the number killed by railways.
In the Assu. Mag. for 1860 (Vol. 9) will be found an able paper by Mr. H. W. Porter, B.A., On some considerations suggested by the Ann. R. of the Reg.-Gen., in which the frightful accidents happening in Factories are reviewed, and some very sensible suggestions made for their remedy.
Over a period of 15 years ending 1864, the deaths from accidents and negligence averaged 691 per million of the pop. living; ranging from 649 in 1858 to 733 in 1865.
The deaths in 1867 were thus divided: Males 11,446, Females 3701. Of the males 791 met with their deaths under one year of age, and 2069 under 5; 753 between 5 and 10; 870 between 10 and 15; 946 between 15 and 20; 949 between 20 and 25; 1501 between 25 and 35; 1347 between 35 and 45; 1083 between 45 and 55; 858 between 55 and 65; 569 between 65 and 75; 231 between 75 and 85; 47 between 85 and 95, and I above 95. Of the Females, 715 met with their deaths under one year, and 1566 under five years; 372 between 5 and 10; 153 between 10 and 15; 118 between 15 and 20; 84 between 20 and 25; 140 between 25 and 35; 154 between 35 and 45; 190 between 45 and 55; 198 between 55 and 65; 259 between 65 and 75; 288 between 75 and 85; 98 between 85 and 95, and 4 over 95.
Mons. A. Legoyt, the head of the General Statistical Department of France, and secretary of the Statistical So. of Paris, has recently (1865) drawn to a conclusion some researches relative to "Accidents in Europe and the United States," a résumé of which can scarcely fail to be of interest. We purpose, therefore, to lay before our readers the more important inferences which may be deduced from M. Legoyt's labours, availing ourselves of the services of a writer in the Lancet, who has travelled over the same ground. The questions with which the French statistician has busied himself are-1st, the ratio of accidents to the population; 2nd, their ratio to the general mortality of each sex; and 3rd, their ratio as regards the female population, the male standard being taken at 100, in the different countries which enter into the comparison here made. From some of the numbers given we find that the proportion of fatal accidents to the population varies between the maxima of 682, 679, and 575 to a million of inhabitants in England, Norway, and the United States, and the co-efficient minima of 201, 202, and 232 of Russia, Spain, and Denmark.
It is evident from such variable proportions that the determining causes of fatal accidents must be of very complex nature, and cannot be explained simply by what may be called the economic character of different countries. In fact, if the predominance of manufacturing and mining industry justifies the exceptional rate of fatal accidents in England, and to a certain extent in the United States, it surely cannot do so as regards Norway, the Duchy of Oldenburg, and Sweden. On the other hand, we should miss with surprise Belgium and Saxony, two of the chief industrial States of Europe, from amongst the countries with a high rate of mortality from fatal accidents, if a great development of manufacturing industry were the chief cause of such mortality. We must, therefore, fall back upon the existence of special local causes dependent on the manners, customs, and configuration of the country, perils of navigation, fishing, and modes of transport, neglect of children, or actual exposure of them to dangers of various kinds, etc.
There would not appear to be any absolute relation between the ratio of deaths from accidents and the population, and between such ratio and the total number of deaths. Herein exists two classes of facts, indeed essentially distinct from each other. relatively large number of accidents need have but a slight influence in the production of the causes of general mortality. The proportion of such accidents amongst women to 100 amongst men oscillates between one-fourth and one-third. It would appear to be quite exceptional in the United States (46 per 100). In our own country the proportion is relatively high; and here a great number of female hands participate in the production of our industry. M. Legoyt has been able to compare only a small number of countries, in reference to the immediate causes or nature of accidents.
With the exception of England, where "burns and scalds," and of the United States, where contusions and injuries (classified under "crushing and bruising"), occupy the first place amongst accidents, "submersion" is the cause of the greatest number of deaths. Next come falls from an elevation; then burns, crushings, and asphyxia. Amongst the Scandinavian countries the large number of "congelations" is not to be wondered at ; but there must evidently be some error as regards Spain in this particular. So also, whilst we are not surprised to find that "alcoholic excesses" play an important part in Russia and Sweden, we are struck by their insignificance in England, Denmark, and the United States; some fallacy, we suspect, likewise lurks here. It is with respect to "burns" that the ratio of fatal accidents rises higher amongst women than amongst men. M. Legoyt's researches tend to show that accidental deaths nearly everywhere increase more rapidly than does the population. In France, for example, the following successive
and increasing ratio has taken place:-15 fatal accidents to 100,000 inhabitants from 1827 to 1830; 16 ditto from 1831 to 1835; 19 ditto from 1836 to 1840; 22 ditto from 1841 to 1845; 24 ditto from 1846 to 1850; 25 ditto from 1851 to 1855; and 28 ditto from 1856 to 1860. No doubt some of this increase is due to the more exact character of recent enumerations; still, the continuously progressive rate which is here seen indicates a sure though lamentable onward movement.
Children appear to constitute a high proportion of the victims of fatal accidents. In Bavaria the latter form a very large part of the causes of mortality of childhood and adolescence, from birth to 20 years of age, and within this range the maximum is attained between the time of birth and five years. Submersion is the more frequent cause— particularly as regards male children-of the fatal event. Burns and poisoning are frequent in tender years; but strangely enough, children are less frequently victims in towns than in country districts.
The ratio of females to males as regards accidents tends to increase, probably with the participation of the former in industrial occupations. In Bavaria and in Saxony the ratio is highest during early infancy, and in the former State lowest between 40 and 50 years of age. At every age it attains its maximum through "burns," which in Bavaria are more common during summer than in winter. Women more frequently succumb to burns, suffocation by fire, submersion, and poisoning.
M. Legoyt found fatal accidents to be of much more frequent occurrence in summer than during the other three seasons of the year, and considered this probably due to the fact of the former season being the chief one for out-door operations, navigation, etc. In England it is found that the extremes of heat and cold are productive of non-fatal injuries. The statistics of non-fatal injuries do not properly arise here. We shall refer
to them under ACCIDENT INS.
Where death or personal injury results from negligence as distinguished from accident, the person or persons occasioning the same are liable to damages under Lord Campbell's Act, of which we shall speak fully under INJURIES (personal) and NEGLIGENCE.
We propose now to glance at the mort. of Insured life arising from accidents :
In the Equitable during a period of 32 years, 1801-32, out of 4,095 deaths, 40 (or about 1 in every 100) were from accidents. In 7 cases the ages were under 30 years; II between 40 and 50; 9 between 50 and 60; 4 between 60 and 70; 5 between 70 and 80; and 4 over 80.
In the Scottish Widows, out of 1,398 deaths in 7 years ending 1866, there were but 40 included under the class Violent deaths, of which, no doubt, the greater proportion would be from accident.
In the Scottish Equitable, out of 1,855 deaths in 33 years ending 1864, there were 70 included under head of Violent deaths; but as no details are given it is impossible to say the precise proportion from accidents.
In the Scottish Amicable, out of 773 deaths occurring during a period of 34 years, 1826-60, 25 are returned as arising from accidental injuries, and 10 from drowning in addition thus there are 35 deaths from accident, or nearly 5 p.c.
In the Gresham, out of 1,000 deaths occurring in a period of 18 years, 12 are returned as from accidents, and 14 from drowning-making in all 26, or more than 21⁄2 p.c. of the entire deaths.
In the Briton, out of 1,165 deaths in 5 years, 31 are returned as from accidents, in add. to 19 from drowning-being very nearly from the combined causes 5 p.c. of the deaths!
Life may sometimes be saved by a prompt and judicious treatment in cases of accident and emergency even before medical aid can arrive. The Accident Ins. Co., fully alive to this fact, distribute to its agents and pol.-holders a sheet of directions accompanied by diagrams showing how to proceed in many of the most frequent cases of injury. This sheet was prepared by Alfred Smee, Esq., F. R. S.
There are several other publications having a similar aim, viz :
First Help in Accidents, prepared by Dr. C. H. Schaible, M.D., and pub. by Hardwick (1864). [RAILWAY ACCIDENTS.] [VIOLENT DEATHS.]
ACCIDENT INS., HIST. OF.—This branch of Ins., when spoken of by previous writers, has generally been classed under the comprehensive designation of "Casualty Ins." It is still so called in the U.S. At the best Accident Ins. can constitute but one department of casualty business. We think the time has arrived when it should be placed under its distinctive title of ACCIDENT INS.
Accident Ins. in its present form represents one of the most popular adaptations of the principle of ins. to the requirements of every-day life. It meets a recognized want. It gives to the professional and better classes a means of protection from the pecuniary and other consequences of disablement, in a purely business form. What Friendly Societies do for the industrial classes, Accident Ins. does for the higher classes. The cost of Accident Ins. may be said to be within the reach of every one for whom it is especially intended.
It has been truly said "there are hundreds of thousands who cannot afford to be run
over; to whom a lingering illness would be misery, and whose death would scatter or starve their families. A serious or severe accident would probably deprive a clerk of his situation, and a small tradesman of his business, leaving them no home but the hospital, and no hope but the grave." But the advantages of Accident Ins. are too palpable to need argument. The neglect of it too frequent to escape notice!
The prosp. of one of the existing Accident Cos. puts the matter in a very businesslike shape :
The same arguments which have induced the public to insure so largely against damage to property by Fire-to ships by the perils of the Sea-and to secure a fund payable on the ordinary termination of Life are exactly applicable to Ins. against expenses and loss of income consequent on an Accident, and to secure a fund in case of death happening by some extraordinary casualty. It is not meant that the mere fact of receiving injury should entitle the Assured to Compensation. To pretend to pay for pain of mind or body would be absurd. The allowance for injury is intended to be paid when it is sufficiently serious to prevent the Assured from following his usual occupation or pursuits, and to serve as an indemnity for the loss thereby incurred.
It is generally considered that the business of Accident Ins. is of very modern origin, and, indeed, in its present form it dates no further back than 1848. But there are many early indications of the idea and intention of Accident Ins. which demand a passing notice.
In the ancient Sea-Laws of Wisby, under date 1541, mention is made of the practice of the owners of ships insuring the lives of the masters against the perils of the sea. The passage in which this allusion occurs is believed not to be part of the original code of Wisby, or indeed it would demand an earlier date; but it is admitted that it must have been interpolated about the date named; and it is therefore the first mention we have of any species of Ins. falling within the scope of Accident Ins.
In 1661 M. Cleirac brings under notice a French pub. called Le Guidon, said to have been orig. compiled "for the benefit of the merchants trading in the noble city of Rouen." This work is believed to be more than 300 years old; and it contains an account of various descriptions of Ins. as then practised, some of which are very remarkable. That most nearly resembling modern Accident Ins. is as follows:-" Another kind of Ins. is made by other nations, upon the life of men, in case of their decease upon their voyage, to pay certain sums to their heirs or creditors."
We have next a more direct example of the embodiment of the principle of non-fatal Accident Ins., but applied to the casualties of warfare. In 1665 England declared war against the United Netherlands. The Republic issued a proclamation announcing the amount of recompense which would be awarded to soldiers wounded in the service of their country, as follows:
For loss of both eyes, 1,500 livres = £62 10s. For loss of right hand, 350 livres = £14 125.
one eye, 350
both arms, 1,500
left hand, 300
one leg, 350 both feet, 450
And other arrangements were made for those suffering from less definite injuries. It appears from a R. made to the Lords of the Treasury in 1694, on the petition of Capt. Betsworth, of the Fusileers, who had lost his leg in battle, that it had been the custom to allow to a soldier a year's pay for the loss of a limb. This would not have been a very high assessment considering the small pay of the army at that date.
Injuries incurred in actual warfare do not come within the ordinary scope of Accident Ins.; but they have within recent times been specially insured against both in England and America. The similarity of the preceding Table to one now actually in use, and to which we shall have occasion presently more particularly to refer, is very remarkable.
The system of Accident Ins., as now practised, may be said in some measure to owe its origin to the development of Railway travelling-although the ins. against Railway accidents forms but a very unimportant part of the business of Accident Ins. However, with 1845-memorable in the hist. of Railway enterprise-our record begins. following is an accurate list of this especial class of ins. projects in that and several subsequent years:
1845. Railway British and Foreign L. and Property Ins. Co.
1845. Railway, Steam Vessel, L. and Casualty Co.
1845. Railway Guarantee Co.
1847. Railway Casualty Compensation Co.
1847. Railway L. Co.
1847. Railway L. and Accident.
1847. Railway L. Assurance, Accident, Trust and Provident So.
1848. Railway Provident Mutual L.
1848. United Railway Casualty Co.
Railway Passengers Assu. Co.
1848. Railway Assu. Co.