Frequently a sale or contract to sell goods is not in itself unlawful, but the purpose of the buyer or seller is unlawful. It is held in England that mere knowedge of an illegal purpose of the other party to the transaction will render a bargain so opposed to public policy that no recovery can be had upon it.*6 And an equally severe rule has been enforced in a number of decisions in this country.37 But the weight of authority in the United States does not support so strict a rule. In a Massachussetts decision,38 Holmes, C. J., in delivering the opinion of the court, said, in speaking of a sale of liquor in Massachusetts which the buyer intended to resell in Maine contrary to the law of the latter State: "In our opinion a sale otherwise lawful is not connected with subsequent unlawful conduct by the mere fact that the seller correctly divines the buyer's unlawful intent closely enough to make the sale unlawful. It will be observed that the finding puts the plaintiff's knowledge of the defendant's intent no higher than an uncommunicated inference as to what the defendant was likely to do. Of course the defendant was free to change his mind, and there was no communicated desire of the plaintiff's to cooperate with the defendant's present intent, such as was supposed in the former decision, but on the contrary an understood indifference to everything beyond an ordinary sale in Massachusetts. It may be that, as in the case of attempts,39 the line of proximity will vary somewhat according to the gravity of the evil apprehended,40 and in different courts with regard to the same or similar matters.41 But the decisions tend more and more to agree that the connection with the unlawful act in cases like the present is too remote." 42

33 Holmes, J. See the following section.

34 Collins v. Blantern, 2 Wils. 341; Greville v. Attkins, 9 B. & C. 462; McMullen v. Hoffman, 174 U. S. 639, 43 L. Ed. 1117, 19 S. Ct. Rep. 839; Muskogee Land Co. 0. Mullins, 166 Fed. 179, 91 C. C. A. 213, 16 Ann. Cas. 3S7; Way v. Greer, 196 Mass. 237, 81 N. E. 1002; Zeller 0. Letter, 189 N. Y. 361, 82 N. E. 158. And see numerous other cases cited in 16 Ann. Cas. 388, n.. Where a party to an illegal contract makes a prima facie case without disclosing the illegality, defendant's guilty participation does not preclude him from proving as a defence the illegal part of the contract. Lanham v. Meadows, 72 W. Va. 610, 47 L. R. A. (N. S.) 592, 78 S. E. 750.

35 See supra, Sec. 1630 a.

36 Pearce v. Brooks, L. R. 1 Ex. 213. The seller of a brougham to a prostitute who knew that it was to be used as part of the latter's display was held debarred from recovering the price.

See also Upfill 0. Wright, 103 L. T. (N. S.) 834.

37 Milner v. Patton, 49 Ala. 423; Oxford Iron Co. 0. Spradley, 51 Ala. 171; Ware 0. Jones, 61 Ala. 288; Jones 0. Owens (Ga. 1919), 99 S. E. 121, 387; Plank 0. Jackson, 128 Ind. 424, 26 N. E. 568, 27 N. E. 1117; Williamson v. Baley, 78 Mo. 636; Fisher 0. Lord, 63 N. H. 514,3 Atl. 927; Jones 0. Surprise, 64 N. H. 243, 9 Atl. 384 (cf\ Durkee 0. Moses, 67 N. H. 115, 23 Atl. 793); Hull 0. Ruggles, 56 N. Y. 424; Araot 0. Pittston Coal Co., 68 N. Y. 558, 23 Am. Rep. 190; Materne v. Horwita, 101 N. Y. 469, 5 N. E. 331; Lewis v. Latham, 74 N. C. 283 (cf. Lang v. Lynch, 38 Fed. 489); Spurgeon 0. Mc-Elwain, 6 Ohio, 442, 27 Am. Dec. 266; Pabst Brewing Co. 0. Smith, 39 Okl. 403, 135 Pac. 381; Mordecai 0. Daw-kins, 9 Rich. L. 262; Oliphant 0. Mark-ham, 79 Tex. 543,15 S. W. 569,23 Am. St. Rep. 363; Aiken v. Blaisdell, 41 Vt. 655; Mound 0. Barker, 71 Vt. 253, 44 Atl. 346. See also Johns v. Reed, 77 Neb. 492, 109 N. W. 738.

38 Graves v. Johnson, 170 Mass. 53, 60 N. . 383, 88 Am. St. Rep. 355.

39 Citing Commonwealth v. Peaslee, 177 Mass. 267, 50 N. E. 55; Commonwealth v. Kennedy, 170 Mass. 18, 22, 48 N. E. 770.

40 Citing Steele v. Curie, 4 Dana, 381, 385, 388; Hanauer v. Doane, 12 Wall. 342, 446, 20 L. Ed. 430; Bickel v. Sheets, 24 Ind. 1,4; to which may be added Green v. Collins, 3 Cliff. 404; Tracy v. Talmage, 14 N. Y. 162, 215, 67 Am. Dec. 132; Messersmith v. American Fidelity Co., 187 N. Y. App. D. 35, 175 N. Y. S. 160, 171.

41 Compare Hubbard v. Moore, 24 La. Ann. 501, 13 Am. Rep. 128; Mi-chael,v. Bacon, 40 Mo. 474,8 Am. Rep. 138, with Pearce v. Brooks, L. R. 1 Ex. 213.

42 Citing Mclntyre v. Parks, 3 Mete. 207; Sortwell v. Hughes, 1 Curt. C. C. 244, 247; Green v. Collins, 3 Cliff. 404; Hill v. Spear, 50 N. H. 253, 0 Am.

Rep. 205; Tracy v. Talmage, 14 N. Y. 162, 67 Am. Dec. 132; Distilling Co. v. Nutt, 34 Kans. 724, 720, 10 Pac. 163; Webber v. Donnelly, 33 Mich; 460; Tuttle v. Holland, 43 Vt. 542. Braunn v. Keally, 146 Pa. St. 510, 524, 23 Atl. 380, 28 Am. St. Rep. 811; Wallace v. Lark, 12 S. C. 576, 578, 32 Am. Rep. 516; Rose v. Mitchell, 6 Colo. 102, 45 Am. Rep. 520; Jameson v. Gregory's Exr., 4 Mete. (Ky.) 363, 370; Bickel v. Sheets, 24 Ind. 1; Hubbard v. Moore, 24 La. Ann. 501, 13 Am. Rep. 128; Michael v. Bacon, 40 Mo. 474, 8 Am. Rep. 138. To these cases may be added Hollenberg Music Co. v. Berry, 85 Ark. 0, 106 S. W. 1172, 122 Am. St. Rep. 17; California Raisin Growers' Assoc, v. Abbott, 160 Cal. 601, 117 Pac. 767; Longnecker v. Shields, 1 Colo. App. 264, 28 Pac. 650; Singleton v. Bank of Monticello, 113 Ga. 527, 38 S. E. 047; Sondheim v. Gilbert, 117 Ind. 71, 18 N. E. 687, 5

At all events mere reasonable cause of belief without actual knowledge, on the part of a seller of goods, that the purchaser is buying them for an unlawful use, does not prevent recovery of the price.43