ACCESS, persons. Approach, or the means or power of approaching. Sometimes by access is understood sexual intercourse; at other times the opportunity of communicating together so that sexual intercourse may have taken place, is also called access. 1 Turn. & R. 141.
2. In this sense a man who can readily be in company with his wife, is said to have access to her; and in that case, her issue are presumed to be his issue. But this presumption may be rebutted by positive evidence that no sexual intercourse took place. lb.
3. Parents are not allowed to prove non-access, for the purpose of bastardizing the issue of the wife; nor will their declarations be received after their deaths, to prove the want of access, with a like intent. 1 P. A. Bro. R. App. xlviii.; Rep. tem. Hard. 79; Bull. N. P. 113; Cowp. R. 592; 8 East, R. 203; 11 East, R. 133. 2 Munf. R. 242; 3 Munf. R. 599; 7 N. S. 553; 4 Hayw R. 221, 3 Hawks, R 623 1 Ashm. R. 269; 6 Binn. R. 283; 3 Paige's R. 129; 7 N. S. 548. See Shelf. on Mar. & Div. 711; and Paternity.
ACCESSARY, criminal law. He who is not the chief actor in the perpetration of the offence, nor present at its performance, but is some way concerned therein, either before or after the fact committed.
2. An accessary before the fact, is one who being absent at the time of, the crime committed, yet procures, counsels, or commands another to commit it. 1 Hale, P. C. 615. It is, proper to observe that when the act is committed through the agency of a person who has no legal discretion nor a will, as in the case of a child or an insane person, the incitor, though absent when the crime was committed, will be considered, not an accessary, for none can be accessary to the acts of a madman, but a principal in the first degree. Fost. 340; 1 P. C. 118.
3. An accessary after the fact, is one who knowing a felony to have been committed, receives, relieves, comforts, or assists the felon. 4 Bl. Com. 37.
4. No one who is a principal (q. v.) can be an accessary.
5. In certain crimes, there can be no accessaries; all who are concerned are principals, whether they were present or absent at the time of their commission. These are treason, and all offences below the degree of felony. 1 Russ. 21, et seq.; 4 Bl. Com. 35 to 40; 1 Hale, P. C. 615; 1 Vin. Abr. 113; Hawk. P. C. b. 2, c. 29, s. 16; such is the English Law. But whether it is law in the United States appears not to be determined as regards the cases of persons assisting traitors. Serg. Const. Law, 382; 4 Cranch, R. 472, 501; United States v. Fries, Parnphl. 199.
6. It is evident there can be no accessary when there is no principal; if a principal in a transaction be not liable under our laws, no one can be charged as a more accessary to him. 1 W.& M. 221.
7. By the rules of the common law, accessaries cannot be tried without their consent, before the principals. Foster, 360. The evils resulting from this rule, are stated at length in the 8th vol. of Todd's Spencer, pp. 329, 330.
ACCESSION, property. The ownership of a thing, whether it be real or personal, movable or immovable, carries with it the right to all that the thing produces, and to all that becomes united to it, either naturally or artificially; this is called the right of accession.
2. – 1. The doctrine of property arising from accession, is grounded on the right of occupancy.
3. – 2. The original owner of any thing which receives an accession by natural or artificial means, as by the growth of vegetables, the pregnancy of animals; Louis. Code, art. 491; the embroidering of cloth, or the conversion of wood or metal into vessels or utensils, is entitled to his right of possession to the property of it, under such its state of improvement; 5 H. 7, 15; 12 H. 8, 10; Bro. Ab. Propertie, 23; Moor, 20; Poph. 88. But the owner must be able to prove the identity of the original materials; for if wine, oil, or bread, be made out of another man's grapes, olives, or wheat, they belong to the new operator, who is bound to make satisfaction to the former proprietor for the materials which he has so converted. 2 Bl. Com. 404; 5 Johns. Rep. 348; Betts v. Lee, 6 Johns. Rep. 169; Curtiss v. Groat, 10 Johns. 288; Babcock v. Gill, 9 Johns. Rep. 363; Chandler v. Edson, 5 H. 7, 15; 12 H. 8, 10; Fits. Abr. Bar. 144; Bro. Abr. Property, 23; Doddridge Eng. Lawyer, 125, 126, 132, 134. See Adjunction; Confusion of Goods. See Generally, Louis. Code, tit. 2, c. 2 and 3.
ACCESSION, international law, is the absolute or conditional acceptance by one or several states, of a treaty already concluded between one or several states, of a traty already concluded between other sovereignties. Merl. Rep. mot Accession.
ACCESSORY, property. Everything which is joined to another thing, as an ornament, or to render it more perfect, is an accessory, and belongs to the principal thing. For example, the halter of a horse, the frame of a picture, the keys of a house, and the like; but a bequest of a house would not carry the furniture in it, as accessory to it. Domat, Lois Civ. Part. 2, liv. 4, tit. 2, s. 4, n. 1. Accesiorium non ducit, sed sequitur principale. Co. Litt. 152, a. Co. Litt. 121, b. note (6). Vide Accession; Adjunction; Appendant; Appurtenances; Appurtenant; Incident.
ACCESSORY CONTRACT. one made for assuring the performance of a prior contract, either by the same parties, or by others; such as suretyship, mortgages, and pledges.
2. It is a general rule, that payment of the debt due, or the performance of a thing required to be performed by the first or principal contract, is a full discharge of such accessory obligation. Poth. Ob. part. 1, c. 1, s. 1, art. 2, n. 14. Id. n. 182, 186. See 8 Mass. 551; 15 Mass. 233; 17 Mass. 419; 4 Pick. 11; 8 Pick. 522.
3. An accessory agreement to guaranty an original contract, which is void, has no binding effect. 6 Humph. 261. ACCIDENT. The happening of an event without the concurrence of the will of the person by whose agency it was caused or the happening of an event without any human agency; the burning of a house in consequence of a fire being made for the ordinary purpose of cooking or warming the house, which is an accident of the first kind; the burning of the same house by lightning would have been an accident of the second kind. 1 Fonb. Eq. 374, 5, note.
2. It frequently happens that a lessee covenants to repair, in which case he is bound to do so, although the premises be burned down without his fault. 1 Hill. Ab. c. 15, s. 76. But if a penalty be annexed to the covenant, inevitable accident will excuse the former, though not the latter. 1 Dyer, 33, a. Neither the landlord nor the tenant is bound to rebuild a house burned down, unless it has been so expressly agreed. Amb. 619; 1 T. R. 708; 4 – Paige, R. 355; 6 Mass. R. 67; 4 M'Cord, R. 431; 3 Kent, Com. 373.
3. In New Jersey, by statute, no action lies against any person on the ground that a fire began in a house or room occupied by him, if accidental. But this does not affect any covenant. 1 N. J. Rev. C. 216.


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