Perhaps as common a test as any that has been suggested for distinguishing promises which fall within the statute from those which fall without its boundaries, is based on the supposed purpose or object of the promisor. Chief Justice Shaw,
16See infra, Sec. 472.
17Nelson v. Boynton, 3 Met. 396, 402, 37 Am. Dec. 148.
18 Swayne v. Hill, 59 Neb. 662, 655, 81 N. W. 855, quoted from Fitz-genld v. Morrissey, 14 Neb. 198, 15 N. W. 233.
19 In Nugent v. Wolfe, 111 Pa. St. 471, 480, 4 AH 15, 56 Am. Rep. 291, it is stated as a general rule that "When the leading object of the promise or agreement is to become guarantor or surety to the promisee, for a debt for which a third party is and continues to be primarily liable, the agreement, whether made before or after, or at the time with the promise of the principal, is within the statute, and not binding unless evidenced by writing. On the other hand, when the leading object of the promisor is to subserve some interest or purpose of his own, notwithstanding the effect is to pay or discharge the debt of another, hie promise is not within the statute." To the same effect are, Emerson v. Slater, 22 How. 28, 43, 16 L. Ed. 360; Mine, etc., Supply Co. v. Stockgrowers' Bank, 173 Fed. 859, 98 C. C. A. 22S; Guaranty Trust Co. v. Koehler, 195 Fed. 669, 115 C. C. A. 479; Kelsey v. Mun-son, 198 Fed. 841, 843, 117 C. C. A. 483; Clifford v. Luhring, 69 III. 401; Frohardt v. Duff, 156 Ia. 144,135 N. W. 609, 40 L. R. A. (N. S.) 242; Oldenburg v. Dorsey, 102 Md. 172, 179, 62 Atl. 576; Rice v. Hardwick, 17 N. Mex. 73, 124 Pac. 800; Crawford v. Edison, 45 Oh. St. 239, 13 N. E. 80; Fehlinger v. Wood, 134 Pa.. St. 517, 524, 19 Atl. 746; Lorick v. Caldwell, 85 S. Car. 94, 100, 67 S. E. 143; Bellows v. Sowles, 57 Vt. 164, 171, 52 Am. Rep. 118.
by becoming "a mere guarantor or surety of another's debt." The real distinction of purpose or object which it is sought to bring out is doubtless that between intending that the consideration for which the promise is given shall benefit the promisor himself, or shall benefit a third person, the co-debtor. This is apparent in the quotation from Shaw, but the idea has become blurred in the quotation from the Nebraska decision, and is generally indistinctly stated by those who make the purpose of the promisor the test. Even when the matter is carefully stated and understood it is to be observed that the promisor's intention with respect to the consideration can be distinguished only by considering whether the consideration was in fact to be received by and become advantageous to the promisor, or was to be received by and be beneficial to another. The nature of the consideration in fact given for a promise therefore furnishes more exactly and simply than the promisor's supposed purpose, the test presumably sought by those who inquire into that purpose. Thus understood, this test is open to the criticism made hereafter 20 of judicial dicta directly adopting as a test the beneficial character of the consideration. A reason for the indistinctness with which the proposed test of the purpose of the promisor is often stated, may be found in the desire of courts to state a principle in such a way as to harmonize all decisions. There are doubtless certain lines of cases excluded from the operation of the statute for the reason that the main object of each of the contracting parties, and the main purpose of the contract have nothing to do with the payment of the debt of another, such payment if it occurs being merely incidental;21 but any attempt to make this principle account for the generality of decisions on the provision of the Statute of Frauds here in question, is doomed to failure.22
20Infra, Sec. 472.
21 See infra, Sec. 484.
22In Harburg Comb Co. v. Martin,  1 K. B. 778, 786, 787, Vaughan Williams, L. J., defined the extent of certain exceptional cases as follows: "Whether you look at the 'property cases' or at the 'del credere cases,' it seems to me that in each of them the conclusion arrived at really was that the contract in question did not fall within the section because of the object of the contract. In each of those cases there was in truth a main contract - a larger contract - and the obliga-tion to pay the debt of another was merely an incident of the larger contract. As I understand those cases, it is not a question of motive - it is a question of object. You must find what