Again, a continuing contract may contain a provision making it determinable at the option of one of the parties, upon certain terms.57 Whether, for instance, a contract of employment provides that it may be terminated by either party on giving a month's notice, and the servant or agent is dismissed on a month's notice, the contract is discharged and not broken.58 Such terms may be incorporated in contracts by usage.59 If a continuous contract fixes no time during which it is to last, and no time is fixed by law or by usage, it may be determined at the will of either party by notice.60 A contract of hiring, for instance, if no time is specified, is generally construed as a hiring at will; and the fact that wages are payable at specified periods does not necessarily show that the hiring was for a specified period.61 In every contract of hiring, certain provisions for discharge are implied. If the servant proves incompetent, for instance, or if he acts in such a way as to injure the employer's business, or is otherwise guilty of breach of duty, the latter may rightfully discharge him.62 This, however, is a breach of contract by the servant or agent, and the master or principal is discharged by the breach.

53 Storer v. Gordon, 3 Maule & S. 308; Southern Exp. Co. v. Glenn, 16 Lea (Tenn.) 472, 1 S. W. 102; Haas v. Railroad Co., 81 Ga. 792, 7 S. E. 629; Slater v. Railroad Co., 29 S. C. 96, 6 S. E. 936; Norris v. Railway Co., 23 Fla. 182, 1 South. 475, 11 Am. St. Rep. 355. See "Carriers," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 112; Cent. Dig. §§ 480-485.

54 "By the act of God, is meant any accident produced by physical causes which are irresistible; such as lightning, storms, perils of the sea, earthquakes, inundations, sudden death, or illness. The act of God excludes all idea of human agency." Fish v. Chapman, 2 Ga. 349, 46 Am. Dec. 393; Mc-Arthur v. Sears, 21 Wend. (N. Y.) 190. Some courts, however, have used the term as synonymous with "inevitable accident." Neal v. Saunderson, 2 Smedes & M. (Miss.) 572, 41 Am. Dec. 609; Blythe v. Railroad Co., 15 Colo. 333, 25 Pac 702, 11 L. R. A. 615, 22 Am. St Rep. 403; Crosby v. Fitch, 12 Conn. 410, 419, 31 Am. Dec. 745; Walpole v. Bridges, 5 Blackf. (Ind.) 222. In an English case the court of common pleas held that, to constitute the "act of God," a loss must arise from "such a direct and violent and sudden and irresistible act of nature" as could not be foreseen, or, if foreseen, prevented. Nugent v. Smith, 1 C. P. Div. 19. And see The Niagara v. Cordes, 21 How. 7, 16 L. Ed. 41. The court of appeal reversed the decision, and held that "it is not necessary to prove that it was absolutely impossible for the carrier to prevent it; but that it is sufficient to prove that by no reasonable precaution under the circumstances could it have been prevented." Nugent v. Smith, 1 C. P. Div. 441. See, also, Memphis & C. R. Co. v. Reeves, 10 Wall. 176, 19 L. Ed. 909; Nashville & C. R. Co. v. David, 6 Heisk. (Tenn.) 261, 19 Am. Rep. 594; Palmer v. Railroad Co., 101 Cal. 1ST, 35 Pac. 630; Morrison v. Davis, 20 Pa. 171, 57 Am. Dec. 695. See "Contracts," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 119; Cent. Dig. §§ 523-530.

55 Clarke v. Railroad Co., 14 N. Y. 570, 67 Am. Dec. 205; Penn v. Railroad Co., 49 N. Y. 204, 10 Am. Rep. 355; Cragin v. Railroad Co., 51 N. Y. 61, 10 Am. Rep. 559; Smith v. Railroad Co., 12 Allen (Mass.) 531, 90 Am. Dec. 166; Michigan S. & N. I. R. Co. v. McDonough, 21 Mich. 165, 4 Am. Rep. 406; Evans v. Railroad Co., 1ll Mass. 142, 15 Am. Rep. 19; Lindsley v. Railroad Co., 36 Minn. 539, 33 N. W. 7, 1 Am. St. Rep. 092. See "Carriers," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) §§ 120, 149 1/2; Cent. Dig. §§ J,S6, 651-662.

56 Nugent v. Smith, 1 C. P. Div. 423. See "Carriers" Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 120; Cent. Dig. § 486.

57 Morrissey v. Broomal, 37 Neb. 766, 56 N. W. 383; Bour v. Kimball, 40

111. App. 327. See "Contracts," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 217; Cent. Dig. §§ 1005-1009.

58 Jenkins v. Long, 8 Md. 132. And so it is with any other kind of contract which contains an express provision that it may be terminated at any time on giving notice. Geiger v. Railroad Co., 41 Md. 4; Oregon & W. Mortg. Sav. Bank v. Mortgage Co. (C. C.) 35 Fed. 22; Adriance v. Rutheford, 57 Mich. 170, 23 N. W. 718. See "Master and Servant," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 21; Cent. Dig. §§ 20, 21.

59 Parker v. Ibbetson, 4 C. B. (N. S.) 347. See "Customs and Usages," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 10; Cent. Dig. §§ 11-39.

60 Coffin v. Landis, 46 Pa. 42G; Peacock v. Cummings, Id. 434; Greenburg v. Early, 4 Misc. Rep. 99, 23 N. Y. Supp. 1009; Attrill v. Patterson, 58 Md. 226; Walker v. Denison, 86 111. 142. See "Contracts;" Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 216; Cent. Dig. §§ 996-1009.

61 Babcock & Wilcox Co. v. Moore, 62 Md. 161; McCullough Iron Co. v. Carpenter, 67 Md. 554, 11 Atl. 176; Beach v. Mullin, 34 N. J. Law, 343; Tat-terson v. Manufacturing Co., 106 Mass. 56; Franklin Min. Co. v. Harris, 24 Mich. 115; Prentiss v. Ledyard, 28 Wis. 131; Haney v. Caldwell, 35 Ark. 156. See "Master- and Servant" Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 21; Cent. Dig. §§ 20, 21.

62 Keedy v. Long, 71 Md. 385, 18 Atl. 704, 5 L. R. A. 759; Adams Exp. Co. v. Trego, 35 Md. 47; Leatherberry v. Odell (C. C.) 7 Fed. 641; Callo v. Brouncker, ,4 Car. & P. 518; Beeston v. Caller, 2 Car. & P. 607; Newman v. Reagan, 63 Ga. 755; Drayton v. Reid, 5 Daly (N. Y.) 442; Fillieul v. Armstrong, 7 Adol. & E. 557. See "Master and Servant" Deo. Dig. (Key-No.) § 80; Cent. Dig. §§ 30-36.