The early common law did not regard as duress the mental pressure exerted by imprisonment or threats to injure another. It was said that a servant could not avoid a deed made because his master was subjected to duress nor could the master avoid his deed because of imprisonment or threats directed against the servant;83 but an exception was made where duress was exercised against the husband or wife or child of the person whose action was coerced.84 This exception has readily been extended in modern times to include all near relatives.85 It is obvious that under the modern definition of duress,86 there can be no question of the nearness of relationship; the question becomes merely one of whether the party induced to act was coerced by wrongful pressure, and the threat to kill or seriously assault a companion who is in no way related to the actor may evidently operate as such coercion.

80Guetzkow Bros. Co. v. Breese, 96 Wis. 691, 72 N. W. 46, 65 Am. St. Rep. 83.

81 McPherson v. Cox, 86 N. Y. 472.

82 United States v. Ellsworth, 101 U. 8. 170, 25 L. Ed. 862 (cf. United States v. Edmondston, 181 U. S. 500, 45 L. Ed. 971, 21 Sup. Ct. 718); Swift v. United States, 111 U. S. 22, 28 L. Ed. 341, 4 Sup. Ct. 244; Snyder v. Rosen-baum, 215 U. S. 261, 30 Sup. Ct. 73, 54 L. Ed. 186; Chicago v. Waukesha, etc., Brewing Co., 97 111. App. 583; News Publishing Co. v. Associated Press, 114 11I. App. 241; Foote v. De Poy, 126 Iowa, 366,102 N. W. 112,114, 68 L. R. A. 302, 106 Am. St. Rep. 365; Searle v. Gregg, 67 Kans. 1, 72 Pac. 544; Carew v. Rutherford, 106 Mass. 1, 8 Am. Rep. 287; McMurtrie v. Keenan, 109 Mass. 186; Vyne v. Glenn, 41 Mich. 112, 1 N. W. 997; State v. Nelson, 41 Minn. 25, 42 N. W. 548; Tandy v. Elmore-Cooper, etc., Co.,

113 Mo. App. 409, 87 S. W. 614; Van Dyke v. Wood, 60 N. Y. App. D. 208, 212, 70 N. Y. S. 324; Ratterman v. American Exp. Co., 49 Ohio St. 608, 32 N. E. 754; Lehigh, etc., Co. v. Brown, 100 Pa. St. 338. Cf. cases cited supra, n. 74.

83 Rolle Abr. 687.

84 Ibid.

85 Williams v. Bayley, L. R. 1 H. L. 200; International Harvester Co. v. Voboril, 187 Fed. 973,110 C. C. A. 311; Holt v. Agnew, 67 Ala. 360; Sharon v. Gager, 46 Conn. 189; O'Toole v. Lam-son, 41 App. D. C. 276; Burton v. McMillan, 52 Fla. 469, 42 So. 849, 8 L. R. A. (N. S.) 991, 120 Am. St. Rep. 220; Bailey v. Devine, 123 Ga. 663, 51 S. E. 603,107 Am. St. Rep. 153; Green v. Moss, 65 11I. App. 594; Kronmeyer v. Buck, 258 III. 586, 101 N. E. 935, 45 L. R. A. (N. S.) 1182; Denney v. Reber, 63 Ind. App. 192, 114 N. E. 424; Henry v. Laurens State Bank, 131