A payment of the debt to one of several joint promisees is a discharge of the debt. So, also, one of the promisees, without the others joining, may give a valid release of the debt, and it will bind the others.33
205. If two or more parties bind themselves severally to another in respect of the same matter or debt, their liability is separate and distinct, and they cannot be sued jointly.
On the other hand, several persons may bind themselves severally to another in respect of the same matter or debt, so that the creditor is entitled to claim the whole debt or performance against each debtor separately.84 In such case the promisors must be sued separately; they cannot be sued jointly.8* Where the promisors are severally liable, and therefore, of course, where they are both jointly and severally liable, a judgment against less than all of them does not discharge the others until it has been satisfied.36 Again, one person may bind himself to each of several persons, provided the interest of each in the subject-matter of the promise is several, so that each promisee is separately entitled to sue thereon.37
C. B. (N. S.) 2; Wetherell v. Langston, 1 Exch. 634; Ehle v. Purdy, 6 Wend. (N. Y.) 629; Baker v. Jewell, 6 Mass. 460, 4 Am. Dec. 162; Beach v. Hotch-kiss, 2 Conn. 697; Wiggin v. Cumings, 8 Allen (Mass.) 353. If the defect does not appear upon the record, there would be a variance between the contract as pleaded and proved, which, unless amended, would be fatal. Jell v. Douglas, 2 B. & Ald. 374; Chanter v. Leese, 4 Mees. & W. 295; Hallett v. Gordon, 122 Mich. 567, 81 N. W. 556, 82 N. W. 827. See "Parties," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 80; Cent. Dig. §§ 123-181, 170.
32Martin v. Crump, 2 Salk. 444; Anderson v. Martindale, 1 East, 497; Peters v. Davis, 7 Mass. 257; Murray v. Mumford, 6 Cow. (N. T.) 441; Supreme Lodge Knights and Ladies of Honor v. Portingall, 167 111. 291, 47 N. E. 203,
59 Am. St. Rep. 296; Mcintosh v. Zaring, 150 Ind. 301, 49 N. E. 164. See "Contracts," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 18'2; Cent. Dig. §§ 780-787.
33Rawstorne v. Gandell, 15 Mees. & W. 304; Wilkinson v. Lindo, 7 Mees. & W. 81; Myrick v. Dame, 9 Cush. (Mass.) 248; Tuckerman v. Newhall, 17 Mass. 581; Bruen v. Marquard, 17 Johns. (N. Y.) 58; Pierson v. Hooker, 3 Johns. (N. Y.) 68, 3 Am. Dec. 467; Napier v. McLeod, 9 Wend. (N. Y.) 120; Osborn v. Martha's Vineyard R, 140 Mass. 549, 5 N. E. 486; Moore v. Bevier,
60 Minn. 240, 62 N. W. 281. Where a partner in a firm doing business in the state, to which a citizen of the state was indebted, was a nonresident, a discharge of the debtor in insolvency by a court of the state, since it did not affect the rights of the nonresident, did not discharge the debt. Chase v. Henry, 160 Mass. 577, 44 N. E. 988, 55 Am. St. Rep. 423. See "Payment," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 5; Cent. Dig. § 7; "Release," Dec. Dig. (Key-No.) § 4; Cent. Dig.