(ii) Southerton v. Whitelock, 1 Str. 690.
(iii) Shep. Touch. 268; Ashfield v. Ashfield, Sir W. Jones, 157. (iv) Ketsey's case, Cro. Jac 320; Holmes v. Blogg, 8 Taunt. (4 E. C. L. E.) 35. See ex parte Taylor, in re Burrows, 25 L. J. (Bkptcy.) 35.
1 A question may here arise as to the extent of the liability for the previous debts of the firm, and in Miller v. Sims, 2 Hill (S. C.) 479, it was held that inasmuch as in general one partner could bind the firm by contracts made without the knowledge of the other, to say that one may enter into or affirm a partnership without incurring these liabilities, would be to say that one may affirm a contract of partnership and disaffirm that which is inseparably incident to it, and the defendant, who had, by his acts of receiving partnership funds, etc, affirmed a partnership, begun while he wan yet an infant, was therefore held liable on a note given by the other partner, before such affirmation, of which he had no knowledge, and which he refused to pay when informed of it. A decision, apparently to the contrary, in Crabtree v. May, 1 B. Mon. 289, will, on examination, be found to have turned on the insufficiency of the replication.-B.
(v) London and North Western Ry. Co. v. M'Michael, 20 L. J. (Ex.) 97; 5 Ex. 114. See Cork and Bandon Ry. Co. v.Cazenove, 10 Q. B. (59 E. C. L. R.) 935.
(vi) Newry and Enniskillen Ry. Co. v. Coombe, 3 Ex. 565.
(vii) Evelyn v. Chichester, 3 Burr. 1717.
(viii) Dublin and Wicklow Ry. Co. v. Black, 22 L. J. (Ex.) 94; 8 Ex. 181,
(ix) See ante, p. *152.
1 It has been seen in a former part of these Lectures, that any acknowledgment, not inconsistent with a promise to pay, such as a partial payment, will be sufficient to remove the bar of the Statute of Limitations. It is not so, however, with respect to the ratification of contracts made during infancy. There must either be a direct affirmation fas in the case cited, supra, by continuing the business, or, in the case of a chattel, by retention of the possession, selling it again, or the like: see Lawson v. Lovejoy, 8 Me. 405; Aldrich v. Grimes, 10 N. H. 194; Kline v. Beebe, 6 Conn. 494; Boyden v. Boy den, 9 Mete. 519;' Thomasson v. Boyd, 13 Ala. 419; Meriweather v. Herran, 8 B. Mon. 162); or an express promise to pay, made voluntarily, with full knowledge of the liability thus incurred, made to the party himself or his agent, to pay any debt contracted during infancy, or upon any ratification made after full age of any promise or contract (h) *made during infancy, whether there shall or shall not be any new consideration for such promise or ratification after full age" (i). It will be observed on looking at the above Act, that, although the 1st section only makes certain specified contracts void, and that therefore there are still some contracts left which are voidable, yet inasmuch as the 2nd section prevents any action being brought upon any ratification made after full age of any promise or contract made during infancy, such voidable contracts cannot form the subject of any action against the infant when he has attained full age. For if voidable they must be ratified to make them valid, and the ratification is now worthless; therefore as far as the infant's liability is concerned, there seems no practical distinction between void and voidable contracts. We shall see, however, that there may be a very important distinction between them, in considering the liability of the party with whom the infant contracts.
*Recently, however, the law as to the voidability and confirmation or ratification of contracts made by infants has been considerably altered by the "Infants Relief Act, 1874" (37 & 38 Vict., c. 62), which was passed on the 7th Aug., 1874. The 1st and 2nd sections of that Act are as follows:
"(1.) All contracts, whether by specialty or by simple contract, henceforth entered into by infants for the repayment of money lent or to be lent, or for goods supplied or to be supplied (other than contracts for necessaries), and all accounts stated with infants, shall be absolutely void : Provided always, that this enactment shall not invalidate any contract into which an infant may, by any existing or future statute, or by the rules of common law or equity, enter, except such as now bylaw are voidable. "(2.) No action shall be brought whereby to charge any person upon any promise made after full age and not to a mere stranger having no interest: Hinely v. Margarita, 3 Pa. St. 423; Ford v. Phillips, 1 Pick. 202; Peirce v. Tobey, 5 Metc. 168; Hale v. Gerrish, 8 N. H. 374; Millard v. Hewlett, 19 Wend. 301; Wilcox v. Roath, 12 Conn. 551; a mere acknowledgment or partial payment will not suffice: Goodsell v. Myers, 3 Wend. 481; Robbins v. Eaton, 10 N. H. 561; Hinely v. Margarita, supra; for the law will imply no promise in the case of an infant, as has been seen, except for necessaries.-R.
The special contract of a minor is ratified by his continuance in it for a month after his majority, and cannot afterwards be avoided: Forsyth v. Hastings, 27 Vt. 646; New Hampshire Ins. Co. v. Noyes, 32 N. II. 345; Hodges v. Hunt, 22 Barb. 150; Little v. Duncan, 9 Rich. 55; Baxter v. Bush, 29 Vt. 465; Hartman v. Kendall, 4 Ind. 403; Emmons v. Murray, 16 N. H. 385. A voidable contract of an infant cannot, after his coming of age, be ratified by a mere acknowledgment of the debt, but a direct promise to pay or a direct confirmation will be evidence of such ratification: Conklin v. Ogborn, 7 Ind. 553; Reed v. Boshears, 4 Sneed, 118; Chandler v. Glover, 32 Pa. St. 509; Mayer v. McLure, 36 Miss. 389; Vaughan v. Parr, 20 Ark. 600; Proctor v. Sears, 4 Allen, 95.
As to what will amount to ratification: West v. Penny, 16 Ala. 186; Levering v. Heighe, 2 Md. Ch. 81; Williams v. Mabee, 5 N. J. Eq. 500; Miles v. Lingerman, 24 Ind. 385; Petty v. Roberts, 7 Bush, 410; Highley v. Barron, 49 Mo. 103; Baker v. Kennett, 54 lb. 82.-S.