"Motive is not the same thing with consideration. Consideration means something which is of value in the eye of the law, moving from" the promisee.9 Confusion between motive and consideration has, however, sometimes arisen, and has taken two forms: (1) The distinction which once existed between "good" and "valuable" consideration; and (2) the view which once maintained that a moral obligation was sufficient to support a promise.
Natural affection for a near relative, or, as it is generally said, the consideration of blood, or natural love and affection, is said to be a "good," but not a "valuable," consideration.10 In the law of contract the consideration must be "valuable." In some early English cases it was attempted to ingraft the doctrine of good consideration, which had been applied in cases of covenants to stand seised, upon the law of contract, but it was not allowed. The mere existence of natural affection as a motive for a promise has probably never been held to amount to a valuable consideration, so as to support an executory contract.11
7 State v. Baker, 8 Md. 44. See "Contracts;" Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 5k; Cent. Dig. § 242.
8Wolford v. Powers, 85 Ind. 294, 44 Am. Rep. 16; Diffenderfer v. Scott, 5 Ind. App. 243, 32 N. E. 87; Daily v. Minnick, 117 Iowa, 563, 91 N. W. 913, 60 L. It. A. 840. See "Contracts," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 5k; Cent. Dig. § 251.
9Thomas v. Thomas, 2 Q. B. 851. See, also, Philpot v. Gruninger, 14 Wall. 570, 20 L. Ed. 743. See "Contracts," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 50; Cent. Dig. § 222.
10 Chit. Cont. 27. "A good consideration is such as that of blood, or of natural love and affection, when a man grants an estate to a near relation; being founded on motives of generosity, prudence, and natural duty. A valuable consideration is such as money, marriage, or the like, which the law esteems an equivalent given for the grant, and is therefore founded in motives of justice. Deeds made upon good consideration only are considered as merely voluntary, and are frequently set aside in favor of creditors and bona fide purchasers." 2 Bl. Comm. 297.
11 Bret v. J. S. and Wife, Cro. Eliz. 755; Fink v. Cox, 18 Johns. (N. Y.) 145, 9 Am. Dec. 191; Priester v. Priester, Rich. Eq. Cas. (S. C.) 26, 18 Am. Dec. 191; Kirkpatrick v. Taylor, 43 111. 207; Smith v. Kittridge, 21 Vt 238; Phillips v. Frye, 14 Allen (Mass.) 36; Pennington v. Gittings, 2 Gill & J. (Md.) 208; Dugan v. Gittings, 3 Gill (Md.) 138, 43 Am. Dec. 306; Whitaker v. Whit-aker, 52 N. Y. 368, 11 Am. Rep. 711; Cotton v. Graham, 84 Ky. 672, 2 S. W. 647; Hadley v. Reed, 58 Hun, 60S, 12 N. Y. Supp. 163; Williams v. Forbes. 114 111. 167, 28 N. E. 463; Wilbur v. Warren, 104 N. Y. 196, 10 N. E. 263. See "Contracts" Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 77; Cent. Dig. §§ 286-290.
It was formerly held that if a person for whose benefit a binding promise was made was nearly related to the promisee, the relationship and the fact that the contract was prompted by natural affection would give a right of action to the beneficiary. This exception to the rule that a contract cannot confer rights upon a person who is not a party to it is no longer generally recognized.12 The question of the right of a third person who did not furnish the consideration to sue upon a promise made for his benefit will be considered in discussing the operation of contract.13