What does the Oath of Office REALLY mean?

Here is the problem… I have made a “big deal” out of the Oath’s of Office. It is an exercise in futility because it seems as though I am the ONLY one who takes it seriously, but you should too. The lack of regard to ethical behavior is the decline of our civilization & humanity.


The act of swearing; the administration of an oath. Jurato creditur in judieio. He who makes oath is to be believed in judgment. 3 Inst. 79.


1. To put on oath ; to administer an oath to a person. 2. To take an oath; to become bound by an oath duly administered. 3. To use profane language. Swearing, in this sense, is made a punishable offense in many jurisdictions.


A bond given by a public officer, conditioned that he shall well and faithfully perform all the duties of the office. The term is sometimes made to include the bonds of executors, guardians, trustees, etc.


A surety; one who has entered into a bond as surety. The word seems to apply especially to the sureties upon the bonds of officers, trustees, etc., while tail should be reserved for the sureties on recognizances and bail-bonds. Haberstich v. Elliott, 189 111. 70, 59 N. E. 557.


As used in bonds of public and private officers, this term imports notonly honesty, but also a punctilious discharge of all the duties of the ofiice, requiringcompetence, diligence, and attention, without any malfeasance or nonfeasance, asidefrom mere mistakes. State v. Chadwick, 10 Or. 408; Hoboken v. Evans, 31 N. J. Law,343; Harris v. Hanson, 11 Me. 245 ; American Bank v. Adams, 12 Pick. (Mass.) 300;Union Bank v. Clossey, 10 Johns. (N. Y.) 273; Perry v. Thompson, 10 N. J. Law, 73.


In Roman law. One who was set free from a state of bondage; anemancipated slave. The word is used in the same sense in the United States, respectingnegroes who were formerly slaves. Fairfield v. Lawson, 50 Conn. 513, 47 Am. Rep. 669;Davenport v. Caldwell, 10 S. C. 333.


striking a.A phrase formerly used in English bankruptcy practice. It referred to the entry ofcertain, papers at the bankruptcy office, preliminary to the prosecution of the fiatagainst a trader who had become bankrupt. These papers consisted of the affidavit, thebond,rind the petition of the creditor, and their object was to obtain from the lord chancelloriiis fiat, authorizing the petitioner to prosecute his complaint against the bankrupt in thebankruptcy courts. Brown.


as applied to a bond, or any other legal instrument, signifies bringing an action upon it, or making it the subject of an action.


The act of one who has, by law, a right and power of having or doing something of advantage, and declines it Also, the declination of a request or demand, or the omission to comply with some requirement of law, as the result of a positive intention to disobey. In the latter sense, the word is often coupled with “neglect,” as, if a party shall “neglect or refuse” to pay a tax. file an official bond, obey an order of court, etc. But “neglect” signifies a mere omission of a duty, which may happen through inattention, dilatoriness, mistake, or inability to perform, while “refusal” implies the positive denial of an application or command, or at least a mental determination not to comply. See Thompson v. Tinkcom, 15 Minn. 299 (Gil. 220); People v. Perkins, 85 Cal. 500, 26 Pac. 245; Kimball v. Rowland, 6 Gray (Mass.) 225; Davis v. Lumpkin. 106 Ga. 582, 32 S. E. 626; Burns v. Fox, 113 Ind. 205. 14 N. E. 541; Cape Elizabeth v. Boyd. 86 Me. 317. 29 Atl. 1062; Taylor v. Mason, 9 Wheat. 344, 6 L. Ed. 101.


To obligate; to bring or place under definite duties or legal obligations, particularly by a bond or covenant; to affect one in a constraining or compulsory manner with a contract or a judgment. So long as a contract, an adjudication, or a legal relation remains in force and virtue, and continues to impose duties or obligations, it is said to be “binding.” A man Is bound by his contract or promise, by a judgment or decree against him, by his bond or covenant, by an estoppel, etc. Stone v. Bradbury, 14 Me. 193; Holmes v. Tutton, 5 El. & Bl. SO; Bank v. Ireland, 127 N. C. 238, 37 S. E. 223; Douglas v. Ilennessy, 15 It I. 272, 10 Atl. 583.


Nemo punitur sine injuria, facto, seu defalta. No one is punished unless for some wrong, act, or default. 2 Inst. 287. Nemo qui condemnare potest, ab- solvere non potest. No one who may condemn is unable to acquit. Dig. 50, 17, 37. Nemo sibi esse judex vel suis jus dicere debet. No oue ought to be his own judge, or the tribunal in his own affairs. Broom, Max. 116, 121. See L. R. 1 C. P. 722, 747. Nemo sine actione experitur, et hoc non sine breve sive libello conventional!. No one goes to law without an action, aud no one can bring an action without a writ or bill. Bract, fol. 112. Nemo tenetur ad impossibile. No one Is bound to an impossibility. Jenk. Cent 7; Broom, Max. 244. Nemo tenetur armare adversarium contra se. Wing. Max. 665. No one is bound to arm his adversary against himself. Nemo tenetur divinare. No man is bound to divine, or to have foreknowledge of, a future event 10 Coke, 55a. Nemo tenetur edere instrumenta contra se. No man Is bound to produce writings against himself. A rule of the Roman law, adhered to in criminal prosecutions, but departed from in civil questions. Bell. Nemo tenetnr informare qui nescit, sed quisquis scire quod informat. Branch, Princ. No one is bound to give information about things he is ignorant of, but every one is bound to know that which he gives information about Nemo tenetur jurare in suam turpl- tudinem. No one is bound to swear to the fact of his own criminality; no one can be forced to give his own oath in evidence of his guilt Bell; Halk. 100. Nemo tenetnr prodere seipsum. No one is bound to betray himself. In other words, no one can be compelled to criminate himself. Broom, Max. 968. Nemo tenetnr seipsum accusare. Wing. Max. 486. No one is bound to accuse him- self. Nemo tenetnr scipsnm infortnniis et pericnlis exponere. No one is bound to expose himself to misfortunes and dangers. Co. Litt. 2536. Nemo unqnam judicet in se. No one can ever be a judge in his own cause. Nemo unqnam vir magnni fuit, sine aliquo divino afflatu. No one was ever a great man without some divine inspiration. Cicero. Nemo videtur fraudare eos qui sciunt et consentinnt. No one seems [is supposed] to defraud those who know and assent [to his acts.] Dig. 50, 17, 145.


Defender or protector of a city or municipality. An oflicer under theRoman empire, whose duty it was to protect the people against the injustice of themagistrates. the insolence of the subaltern officers, and the rapacitv of the moneylenders.Sclim. Civil Law, Introd. 10; Cod. 1, 55. 4. He had the powers of a judge, withjurisdiction of pecuniary causes to a limited amount, and the lighter species of offenses.Cod. 1, 55. 1 ; Nov. 15, c. 3,


Fraud consists of some deceitful practice or willful device, resorted to withintent to deprive another of his right, or in some manner to do him an injury. As distinguishedfrom negligence, it is always positive, intentional. Maher v. Hibernia Ins. Co.,67 N. Y. 292; Alexander v. Church, 53 Conn. 501, 4 Atl. 103; Studer v. Bleistein. 115 N.Y. 31G, 22 X. E. 243, 7 L. R. A. 702; Moore v. Crawford, 130 U. S. 122, 9 Sup. Ct. 447,32 L. Ed. 878; Fechheimer v. Baum (C. C.) 37 Fed. 167; U. S. v. Beach (D. C.) 71 Fed.160; Gardner v. Ileartt, 3 Denio (N. Y.) 232; Monroe Mercantile Co. v. Arnold, 108 Ga. 449, 34 S. E. 176.Fraud, as applied to contracts, is the cause of an error bearing on a material part ofthe contract, created or continued by artifice, with design to obtain some unjustadvantage to the one party, or to cause an inconvenience or loss to the other. CivilCode La. art. 1S47.Fraud, In the sense of a court of equity, properly Includes all acts, omissions, andconcealments which involve a breach of legal or equitable duty, trust, or confidencejustly reposed, and are injurious to another, or by which an undue and unconscientiousadvantage is taken of another. 1 Story, Eq. Jur.


In its use in Jurisprudence, this word is the correlative of right. Thus,wherever there exists a right in any person, there also rests a corresponding duty uponsome other person or upon all persons generally. But it is also used, in a wider sense,to designate that class of moral obligations which lie outside the jural sphere; such,namely, as rest upon an imperative ethical basis, but have not been recognized by thelaw as within its proper province for purposes of enforcement or redress. Thus, gratitudetowards a benefactor is a duty, but its refusal will not ground an action. In thismeaning “duty” is the equivalent of “moral obligation,” as distinguished from a “legalobligation.” See Kentucky v. Denni- son, 24 How. 107, 16 L. Ed. 717; Harrison y. Bush,5 El. & Bl. 349.As a technical term of the law. “duty” signifies a thing due; that which is due from aperson; that which a person owes to another. An obligation to do a thing. A word ofmore extensive signification than “debt,” although both are expressed by the sameLatin word “debitum.” Beach v. Boynton, 20 Vt 725, 733.But In practice it is commonly reserved as the designation of those obligations ofperformance, care, or observance which rest upon a person In an official or fiduciarycapacity ; as the duty of an executor, trustee, manager, etc.It also denotes a tax or impost due to the government upon the Importation orexportation of goods.

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