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Trespass is an area of tort law broadly divided into three groups: trespass to the person, trespass to chattels and trespass to land. Each is concerned with an unauthorized invasion of rights occasioned by another person - the trespasser - making physical contact with the person or property of another.


The Dictionary of Legal Quotations (1904)[edit]

Quotes reported in James William Norton-Kyshe, The Dictionary of Legal Quotations (1904), p. 238-239.
  • The house of every one is to him as his castle and fortress, as well for his defence against injury and violence, as for his repose.
    • Lord Coke, Semayne's Case (1605), 3 Rep. 186.
  • For a man's house is his castle, Et domut sua cuique tutissimnm refugium.
    • Co. 3rd pt. ins. 162.
  • By the laws of England, every invasion of private property, be it ever so minute, is a trespass. No man can set his foot upon my ground without my licence, but he is liable to an action, though the damage be nothing.
    • Camden, L.C.J., Entick v. Carrington (1765), 19 How. St. Tr. 1066.
  • Though it is not always of necessity, nor perhaps here, to go upon the original foundation of a right of law, yet I will beg leave to observe, when we apply the maxim, that every man's house is his castle, we mean not to persuade the inhabiter of a poor hut, that it is provided with draw-bridges or portcullises, but only that it is under such sufficient protection as may provide for his security in a more pleasant, or perhaps, a better way—that it is fortified by the law.
  • The rule that every man's house is his castle, when applied to arrests on legal process, has been carried as far as political justice will warrant; and perhaps farther than the scale of reason and sound policy this will warrant. In the case of life, as we have before hinted generally,—but in the case of life more particularly,—this privilege, and the maxim which supports it, will admit of no extension. It must be confined to breaking the outer door, or window, for the protection of the family, and security from without; and it belongs to those whose domicile it is; for it is not the sanctuary of a stranger. And when a man escapes from the arrest, he is not privileged by his house.
    • Foster, tit. Hom.c. 8, § 20.
  • Whenever a person has any authority by law to do any particular act, and he abuses that authority, he makes himself a trespasser ab initio.

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