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INEBOLI—INEBRIETY, LAW OF

the crown and went to Rome, being succeeded by Aethelheard in Wessex. Ine is said to have built the minster at Glastonbury. The date of his death is not recorded. He issued a written code of laws for Wessex, which is still preserved.

See Bede, Hist. Eccl. (Plummer), iv. 15, v. 7; Saxon Chronicle (Earle and Plummer), s.a. 688e, 694, 710, 715, 721, 722, 725, 728; Thorpe, Ancient Laws, i. 2-25; Schmid, Gesetze der Angelsachsen (Leipzig, 1858); Liebermann, Gesetzeder Angelsachsen (Halle, 1898–99).


INEBOLI, a town on the north coast of Asia Minor, 70 m. W. of Sinūb (Sinope). It is the first place of importance touched at by mercantile vessels plying eastwards from Constantinople, being the port for the districts of Changra and Kastamuni, and connected with the latter town by a carriage road (see Kastamuni). The roadstead is exposed, having no protection for shipping except a jetty 300 ft. long, so that in rough weather landing is impracticable. The exports (chiefly wool and mohair) are about £248,000 annually and the imports £200,000. The population is about 9000 (Moslems 7000, Christians 2000). Ineboli represents the ancient Abonou-teichos, famous as the birthplace of the false prophet Alexander, who established there (2nd century A.D.) an oracle of the snake-God Glycon-Asclepius. This impostor, immortalized by Lucian, obtained leave from the emperor Marcus Aurelius to change the name of the town to Ionopolis, whence the modern name is derived (see Alexander the Paphlagonian).


INEBRIETY, LAW OF. The legal relations to which inebriety (Lat. in, intensive, and ebrietas, drunkenness) gives rise are partly civil and partly criminal.

I. Civil Capacity.—The law of England as to the civil capacity of the drunkard is practically identified with, and has passed through substantially the same stages of development as the law in regard to the civil capacity of a person suffering from mental disease (see Insanity). Unless (see III. inf.) a modification is effected in his condition by the fact that he has been brought under some form of legal control, a man may, in spite of intoxication, enter into a valid marriage or make a valid will, or bind himself by a contract, if he is sober enough to know what he is doing, and no improper advantage of his condition is taken (cf. Matthews v. Baxter, 1873, L.R. 8 Ex. 132; Imperial Loan Co. v. Stone, 1892, 1 Q.B. 599). The law is the same in Scotland and in Ireland; and the Sale of Goods Act 1893 (which applies to the whole United Kingdom) provides that where necessaries are sold and delivered to a person who by reason of drunkenness is incompetent to contract, he must pay a reasonable price for them; “necessaries” for the purposes of this provision mean goods suitable to the condition in life of such person and to his actual requirements at the time of the sale and delivery.

Under the Roman law, and under the Roman Dutch law as applied in South Africa, drunkenness, like insanity, appears to vitiate absolutely a contract made by a person under its influence (Molyneux v. Natal Land and Colonization Co., 1905, A.C. 555).

In the United States, as in England, intoxication does not vitiate contractual capacity unless it is of such a degree as to prevent the person labouring under it from understanding the nature of the transaction into which he is entering (Bouvier, Law Dict., s.v. “Drunkenness”; and cf. Waldron v. Angleman, 1004, 58 Atl. 568; Fowler v. Meadow Brook Water Co., 1904, 57 Atl. 959; 208 Penn., 473). The same rule is by implication adopted in the Indian Contract Act (Act ix. of 1872), which provides (s. 12) that “a person is ... of sound mind for the purpose of making a contract if, at the time when he makes it, he is capable of understanding it and of forming a rational judgment as to its effect upon his interests.” In some legal systems, however, habitual drunkenness is a ground for divorce or judicial separation (Sweden, Law of the 27th of April 1810; France, Code Civil, Art. 231, Hirt v. Hirt, Dalloz, 1898, pt. ii., p. 4, and n. 4).

II. Criminal Responsibility.—In English law, drunkenness, unlike insanity, was at one time regarded as in no way an excuse for crime. According to Coke (Co. Litt., 247) a drunkard, although he suffers from acquired insanity, dementia affectata, is voluntarius daemon, and therefore has no privilege in consequence of his state; “but what hurt or ill soever he doth, his drunkenness doth aggravate it.” Sir Matthew Hale (P.C. 32) took a more moderate view, viz. that a person under the influence of this voluntarily contracted madness “shall have the same judgment as if he were in his right senses”; and admitted the existence of two “allays” or qualifying circumstances: (1) temporary frenzy induced by the unskilfulness of physicians or by drugging; and (2) habitual or fixed frenzy. Those early authorities have, however, undergone considerable development and modification.

Although the general principle that drunkenness is not an excuse for crime is still steadily maintained (see Russell, Crimes, 6th ed., i. 144; Archbold, Cr. Pl., 23rd ed., p. 29), it is settled law that where a particular intent is one of the constituent elements of an offence, the fact that a prisoner was intoxicated at the time of its commission is relevant evidence to show that he had not the capacity to form that intent. Drunkenness is also a circumstance of which a jury may take account in considering whether an act was premeditated, or whether a prisoner acted in self-defence or under provocation, when the question is whether the danger apprehended or the provocation was sufficient to justify his conduct or to alter its legal character. Moreover, delirium tremens, if it produce such a degree of madness as to render a person incapable of distinguishing right from wrong, relieves him from criminal responsibility for any act committed by him while under its influence; and in one case at nisi prius (R. v. Baines, The Times, 25th Jan. 1886) this doctrine was extended by Mr Justice Day to temporary derangement occasioned by drink. The law of Scotland accepts, if it does not go somewhat beyond, the later developments of that of England in regard to criminal responsibility in drunkenness. Indian law on the point is similar to the English (Indian Penal Code, Act. xlv. of 1860, ss. 85, 86; Mayne, Crim. Law of India, ed. 1896, p. 391). In the United States the same view is the prevalent legal doctrine (see Bishop, Crim. Law, 8th ed., i, ss. 397–416). The Criminal Code of Queensland (No. 9 of 1899, Art. 28) provides that a person who becomes intoxicated intentionally is responsible for any crime that he commits while so intoxicated, whether his voluntary intoxication was induced so as to afford an excuse for the commission of an offence or not. As in England, however, when an intention to cause a specific result is an element of an offence, intoxication, whether complete or partial, and whether intentional or unintentional, may be regarded for the purpose of ascertaining whether such intention existed or not. There is a similar provision in the Penal Code of Ceylon (No. 2 of 1883, Art. 79). The Criminal Codes of Canada (1892, c. 29, ss. 7 et seq.) and New Zealand (No. 56 of 1893, ss. 21 et seq.) are silent on the subject of intoxication as an excuse for crime. The Criminal Code of Grenada (No. 2 of 1897, Art. 51) provides that “a person shall not, on the ground of intoxication, be deemed to have done any act involuntarily, or be exempt from any liability to punishment for any act: and a person who does an act while in a state of intoxication shall be deemed to have intended the natural and probable consequences of his act.” There is a similar provision in the Criminal Code of the Gold Coast Colony (No. 12 of 1892, s. 54). Under the French Penal Code (Art. 64), “il n’y a ni crime, ni délit, lorsque le prévenu était en état de démence au temps de l’action ou lorsqu’il aura été contraint par une force à laquelle il n’ a pu résister.” According to the balance of authority (Dalloz, Rép. tit., Peine, ss. 402 et seq.) intoxication is not assimilated to insanity, within the meaning of this article, but it may be and is taken account of by juries as an extenuating circumstance (Ortolan, Droit Pénal i. s. 323: Chauveau et Hélie i. s. 360). A provision in the German Penal Code (Art. 51) that an act is not punishable if its author, at the time of committing it, was in a condition of unconsciousness, or morbid disturbance of the activity of his mind which prevented the free exercise of his will, has been held not to extend to intoxication (Clunet, 1883, p. 311). But in Germany as in France, intoxication may apparently be an extenuating circumstance.