This section is from the book "The Law Of Contracts", by William Herbert Page. Also available from Amazon: Commercial Contracts: A Practical Guide to Deals, Contracts, Agreements and Promises.
In the absence of statute, an offer for a simple contract may be made by any means whereby the offeror causes the offeree to believe that the offeror is making a definite promise which contains the requisite elements. This offer may be made by acts as well as by words. Such a contract is a genuine implied contract, however, and will be discussed elsewhere.1 It differs from the contract made by an express offer only in the evidence by which the communication of the offer and the acceptance is to be established. The contract which is made by an offer in express words and by an acceptance in express words stands at one end of the scale. At the other, stands the contract which is made by an offer inferred from acts and conduct and which is accepted in the same way. In between these two extremes, and shading off from one to the other, are the contracts in which the intention of the parties is communicated in part by express words and in part by acts and conduct. In some cases, one method of communicating intent preponderates; in other cases, the other. Our law, however, pays no attention to these different forms of simple contracts, as long as they are not required to be in writing or to be proved by writing.2 Where any distinction is made, as where a written contract is necessary, or written evidence is necessary, or where a longer period of limitations is given for one class of contract than for another, the line is generally drawn, not between the express contract and the implied contract, but between the written contract and the oral contract. There is, accordingly, a great amount of authority on the question of the scope and extent of the written contract as distinguished from the oral contract; and a considerable amount of authority on the question of the distinction between the genuine implied contract and the constructive contract, or quasi-contract; but practically no authority on the question of the distinction between the contracts which are all express, those which are all implied, and those which are partly express and partly implied.
31Dorchester v. Merchants' National Bank, 106 Tex. 201, 50 L. R. A. (N.8.) 542, 163 8. W. 5.
1 Zinke v. Knights of the Maccabees, - Mo. - , 205 S. W. 1. See ch. XLIII.
2 See Sec. 107.