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ENCYCLOPÆDIA OF INSURANCE.
ABACUS.-An ancient instrument used for facilitating numerical calculations. ABACUS: ENGLISH AND SCOTTISH EQUITABLE ASSO. "for the effecting of Mut. and the granting of Guaranteed Assu. on lives and survivorships." The Asso. was projected some 20 years since (we cannot determine the precise date), and we quote from the preliminary prosp. then issued. The Cap. was to be £500,000 in 25,000 shares of £20. "It is proposed that boards of direction, empowered to grant policies, shall be constituted at Lond. Edin. Glasgow, and other places." The Asso. was intended to embrace the following branches of business :- 1. Mut. assu. 2. The granting of "Guaranteed assu." with parti. in profits. 3. The same without parti. The Asso. was to possess "the most complete and varied set of Tables hitherto pub. ;" and "to prevent any mistake as to what may be the value of a policy, the value which each will have acquired at the end of any completed year of its duration will be endorsed on every policy issued by the Asso. The schedule of values will be cancelled, and a new and a higher Table endorsed on those policies which have attained higher values in consequence of any additions which may have been made to the sum assu. by way of bonus, or of any diminution of future prems.' The prospectus was one of the most carefully prepared we have ever met with. We have noted its really original features. The promoters indeed appear to have expended all their force on it. The project advanced no further. We believe Mr. Edward Ryley prepared the Tables, which were original and elaborate.
ABANDONEE, one to whom anything is abandoned: as an underwriter to whom a ship is
ABANDONMENT in Marine Ins. is the relinquishment by the insured to the insurer of his right to what is saved out of a wreck, when the thing insured has, by some of the usual perils of the sea, become practically valueless. Upon abandonment the insured is entitled to call upon the insurers to pay the full amount of the Ins., as in the case of a total loss. The loss is in such case called a "Constructive total loss." The damage to a cargo must exceed half its value to entitle the insured to abandon, and recover as for a total loss; and to justify the abandonment of the ship the particular injuries must be such that no repairs would render her seaworthy for the remainder of the voyage, or that the cost of making her seaworthy would exceed her value when repaired. The insured must give notice of his intention to abandon, and claim as for total loss to the underwriters, or their agents, within a "reasonable time" after he has received intelligence of the casualty, otherwise it will be taken that he intends to claim for a partial loss only. Abandonment very frequently takes place in cases of capture; the loss is then total, and no question can arise in respect of it. Where, however, a ship and cargo are re-captured within such a time that the object of the voyage is not lost, the insured is not entitled to abandon. The mere stranding of a ship is not deemed of itself such a loss as will justify an abandonment. If by some fortunate accident, by the exertions of the crew, or by borrowed assistance, the ship can be got off and rendered capable of continuing her voyage, the insurers are only liable for the expenses occasioned by the stranding. It is only where the stranding is followed by shipwreck, or the ship is in any other way rendered incapable of prosecuting her voyage, that the insured can abandon.
The subject is of great importance, as abandonment is of very frequent occurrence in Marine Ins. It is very ably handled by Arnould, Marshall, Park, and in the Law Lexicon. This right of abandonment by the Insured to the Insurer is held not to be applicable to the contract of Fire Ins. An attempt was made to enforce its adoption a few years since. The arguments on the subject are given in Bunyon's Law of Fire Ins. p. 104-5.
ABATEMENT.-Abatements for prompt payment or otherwise from the original cost of goods as charged in bills of parcels and invoices, as also allowances, discounts, drawback, etc., at the Custom-house, are often very considerable, and ought to be inquired into, and deductions made accordingly in calculating the true value of the interest insured, and in stating an average loss; which otherwise may on some occasions be adjusted very erroneously.-Weskett. ABATEMENT OF PREMIUM.-The profits of Life Offices are sometimes said to be applied in Abatement of prem. We prefer to speak of it as Reduction of prem. ABBOTT, CHARLES (LORD TENTERDEN), pub. in Lond. in 1802: A Treatise of the Law relative to Merchant Ships and Seamen. This work bears a high character, and is frequently cited upon questions of Commercial Law. It has passed through many eds. in England and America. One of the latest in England was 1856-10th ed. by Mr. Serj. Shee. We shall quote from it in the course of these pages. Lord Eldon termed this an excellent work."
ABERAYRON MARINE INS. Asso. This Asso. was regis. in 1864, being "Limited by Guarantee" under the provisions of the Cos. Act of 1862. It may be regarded as an Ins. Club. ABERDEEN Assu. Ĉo. founded in the city whose name it bears in 1825, for F. and L. Ins. Its authorized cap. was £1,000,000 in 20,000 shares of £50. The Co. has been solid and well managed from the beginning. Its business was for many years very small, and chiefly confined to the North of Scotland. In 1852 the Co. obtained an act of Incorp., on which occasion it took power to change its name, and did change it to the Scottish Provincial, under which title we shall furnish a more complete hist. ABERDEEN FIRE INS. Asso. This Asso. was founded late in the past or early in the present century. It returned duty in 1805 to the amount of £970 145. 4d.; but we cannot trace its subsequent hist. That it had passed out of existence before 1825 may be fairly assumed by the founding of the office last named.
ABERDEEN MARINE INS. Co.-Founded in Aberdeen in 1839. It continued in business up to 1848, when it passed into Liq.
ABERDEEN MUTUAL AND FRIENDLY INS. So.-Founded in Aberdeen in 1831, for the purpose of carrying on the business of Health, Life and Fire Ins. Mr. Alex. Yeates was its Act. and Sec. We cannot trace its later hist.
ABERYSTWITH MUT. SHIP. INs. So. was projected at Aberystwith in 1853, for the purposes of Mut. Marine Ins. Whether now in existence we cannot ascertain. ABODE, habitation, or place of residence. In law it is used in different senses, to denote the place of a man's residence or business, temporary or permanent. "Abode" seems larger and looser in its import than the word "residence," which in strictness means where a man lives, i.e., where he sleeps, or is at home.-Law Lex. ABORTIVE INS. Asso.-By these must be understood Ins. Asso. which having been completely estab. in a legal sense, have either failed to do business, or have not done sufficient to maintain a separate existence. They have mostly, therefore, died out at a very early date. Some have trans. any bus. obtained to another Co., others have passed into Liq. We shall give a list of Abortive Asso. in Tables to be appended to this work. In a mortality Table of Ins. Offices they would rank as having died within the first year after birth. This would give them an average duration of six months. ABORTIVES.-See STILL-BORN CHILDREN.
ABOUT, MONS. EDMOND, pub. in Paris a few years since L'Assurance, 2nd ed. 1866. He has also contributed an interesting series of articles on Life Ins. to some of the French newspapers.
ABBREVIATION, an abridging or contracting. A Table of the Abbreviations used in this work is given on the page preceding letter A. The 4 Geo. II. c. 26 (1731), provided that all law proceedings in the English language should be written legibly, and in words at length, and not abbreviated. Those who have occasion to consult old Acts of Parl. and records will appreciate the value of this rule. The 6 Geo. II. c. 14 (1733), permitted numbers to be expressed in figures.
ABROAD, RESIDENCE.-See FOREIGN RESIDENCE.
ABSENCE. The question not unfrequently arises in Ins. practice whether a person who has left his usual place of residence for some years, and has not been heard of, may be presumed to be alive or dead. As early as 1714, Nicolas Bernoulli applied the science of prob. to the solution of the question of the time after which an absent person may be reputed as dead. Our law now holds that where a person has not been heard of for seven years, he is presumed to be dead. [DEATH, PROOF of.]
ABSOLUTE ASSIGNMENT.-See ASSIGNMENT.
ABSOLUTE AND CONTINGENT REVERSIONARY INTEREST AND INVESTMENT CO., LIM.-A Co. under this title was projected in Lond. in 1862. It went no further. ABSOLUTE LIFE ASSU. So., founded in 1856, with an authorized Cap. of £100,000 in 20,000 shares of 5; mixed; profits every 5 years. "Policies are so framed as to render the amount assu. certain and absolute." Diseased lives and acclimatized lives were ins. "All-world policies" issued. "Assu. are granted payable in the event of loss of Life by fire; also to emigrants and others payable in the event of loss of Life by shipwreck during any voyage at sea, including a provision for payment of reward to persons saving the lives
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." 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 1, 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, II, 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-Ist, 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