Infants, idiots, and lunatics.
Infants' marriage settlements.
(j) Stat. 33 Vict. c. 14, passed l2'th May, 1870, amended by stat. 33 & 34 Vict. c. 102.
(k) Sect. 2.
(l) 2 Black. Com. 291; Bac. Abr. tit. Infancy and Age (13); Zouoh v. Parsons, 3 Burr. I794 Allen v.Allen, 2 Dru. & Wax. 807,838.
(m) Vales v. Boen, 2 Strange, R.P.
1104; Sugd. Pow. 604, 8th ed.; Bac. Abr. tit. Idiots and Lunatics (F); stat. 7 & 8 Vict. c. 76, s. 7; 8 & 9 Vict. c. 106, s. 4.
(n) Stat. 18 & 19 Vict. c. 43, extended to the Court of Chancery in Ireland by stat. 23 & 24 Viet. c. 83; Re Dalton, 6 De Gex, Mac. & Gor. 201. (o) Sect. 2.
Married women are under a limited incapacity to alienate, as will hereafter appear. And before the abolition of forfeiture for treason and felony (u) persons attainted for these crimes could not, by any conveyance which they might make, defeat the right to their estates, which their attainder gave to the crown, or to the lord, of whom their estates were holden (v).
(p) See stat. 11 Geo. IV. & 1 Will. IV. c. 47, s. 11; 11 Geo. IV & 1 Will. IV c. 65, ss. 12, 16, 31; 2 & 3 Vict. c. 60; 11 & 12 Vict, c. 87.
(q) See stat 16 & 17 Vict. c. 70, s. 108 et seq., repealing and consolidating stats. 11 Geo. IV. & 1 Will. IV. c. 65, and 15 & 16 Vict. c. 48, and other acts so far as they relate to idiots and lunatics in England and Wales. This act has been amended by stat. 18 & 19 Vict. c. 13, and extended by stat. 25 & 26 Vict. c. 86.
(r) "The Trustee Act, 1850," stat. 13 & 14 Vict. c. 60, ss. 7, 8.
(s) Stat. 30 & 31 Vict. c. 87, s. 13.
(t) Stat. 13 & 14 Vict. c. 60, ss. 3, 4; 15 & 16 Vict. c. 55, s. 11.
(u) By stat. 33 & 34 Vict. c. 23, passed 4th July, 1870.
(v) Co. Litt. 42 b; 2 Black. Com. 290; Perkins, tit. Grant, sect. 26; Com. Dig. tit. Capacity (D. 6); 2 Shep. Touch. 232; Doe d. Griffith v. Pritchard, 5 Barn. & Adol. 765.
There are certain objects, also, in respect of which the alienation of lands is restricted. In the reign of George II. an act was passed, commonly called the Mortmain Act, the object of which, as expressed in the preamble, was to prevent improvident alienations or dispositions of landed estates, by languishing or dying persons, to the disherison of their lawful heirs (x). This statute provides that no lands or hereditaments, nor any money, stock, or other personal estate, to be laid out in the purchase of any lands or hereditaments, shall be conveyed or settled for any charitable uses, unless by deed indented, sealed and delivered in the presence of two or more credible witnesses, twelve calendar months at least before the death of the donor or grantor, including the days of the execution and death, and inrolled in the High Court of Chancery within six calendar months next after the execution thereof; and unless such stock be transferred six calendar months at least before the death of the donor or grantor, including the days of the transfer and death; and unless the same be made to take effect in possession for the charitable use intended immediately from the making thereof, and be without any power of revocation, reservation, trust, condition, limitation, clause, or agreement whatsoever, for the benefit of the donor or grantor, or of any person or persons claiming under him (y). Provided always, that nothing therein before mentioned relating to the sealing and delivering of any deed twelve calendar months at least before the death of the grantor, or to the transfer of any stock six calendar months before the death of the grantor, shall extend to any purchase of any estate or interest in lands or hereditaments, or any transfer of stock to be made really and bona fide for a full and valuable Consideration actually paid at or before the making of such conveyance or transfer, without fraud or collusion (z). And all gifts, conveyances and settlements for any charitable uses whatsoever made in any other manner or form than by that act is directed, are declared to be absolutely and to all intents and purposes null and void (a). Gifts to either of the two Universities, or any of their colleges, or to the college of Eton, "Winchester, or Westminster, for the support and maintenance of the scholars only upon those foundations, are excepted (b). It will be seen that in consequence of this act no gift of any estate in land for charitable purposes can be made by will. By an act of parliament passed on the 25th July, 1828 (c), the title to lands then already purchased for valuable consideration for charitable purposes is rendered valid, notwithstanding the want of an indenture duly attested and inrolled; but the act is retrospective merely (d).
The Mortmain Act.
(x) Stat. 9 Geo. II. c. 3G.
(y) Sect. I.
The stringency of the provisions in the Mortmain Act has often been felt to be unnecessarily great, especially with regard to that part of the act which provides that there shall be no reservation or clause whatever for the benefit of the donor or grantor. And several acts have recently been passed to amend the law relating to the conveyance of land for charitable uses. One act(e), which was passed on the 17th of May, 1861, provides that no assurance for charitable uses shall be void by reason of the deed or assurance not being indented, or not purporting to be indented, nor by reason of such deed or assurance, or any deed forming part of the same transaction, containing any grant or reservation of any peppercorn or other nominal rent, or of any mines or minerals or easement, or any covenants or provisions as to the erection, repair, position, or description of buildings, the formation or repair of streets or roads, drainage or nuisance, or any covenants or provisions of the like nature, for the use and enjoyment, as well of the hereditaments comprised in such deed or assurance as of any other adjacent or neighbouring hereditaments, or any right of entry on non-payment of any such rent, or on breach of any such covenant or provision, or any stipulations of the like nature, for the benefit of the donor or grantor, or of any person or persons claiming under him; nor in the case of copyholds by reason of the assurance not being made by deed; nor in the case of such assurances, made bona fide on a sale for a full and valuable consideration, by reason of such consideration consisting wholly or partly of a rent, rent-charge, or other annual payment, reserved or made payable to the vendor or to any other person, with or without a right of re-entry for non-payment thereof: provided that in all reservations authorized by the act, the donor, grantor or vendor shall reserve the same benefits for his representatives as for himself (f). The act further provides, that in all cases where the charitable uses of any deed or assurance thereafter to be made for conveyance of any hereditaments for any charitable uses shall be disclosed by any separate deed, the deed of conveyance need not be inrolled; but it will be void, unless such separate deed be inrolled in Chancery within six calendar months next after the making or perfecting of the deed for conveyance (g).