signifies loss or injury of any kind, but in its
particular sense it means loss or injury which a person has sustained in his
property (damnum datum, factum
in this particular sense may include loss
of gain which a person is prevented from realising (lucrum cessans
) as well as loss of actually acquired property
). The causes of damnum
are either chance, accident (casus
), or acts or omissions of reasonable human
beings, for which they are held to be responsible.
As a rule no liability arises out of loss or injury to property caused by
accident (casum nemo praestat
). A person is not
liable for damnum
which he causes to another by
the just exercise of a right which belongs to him (Dig.
): such damnum
is sine injuria.
i.e. wilful or negligent misconduct on the part of the
person committing damnum,
is, as a rule,
necessary in order to constitute liability; but in exceptional cases a
person may be liable although neither dolus
can be imputed to
A wrongful act by which damnum
is caused may be
either an independent delict, or the breach of some special duty to which a
person has become subject as a breach of contract.
The liability to make good a loss which another has suffered is praestare damnum.
A person liable for damages is, as a rule, bound to put the injured party in
the same position as he would have been in if the act by which the damage
was done had not been committed. He may also be subject to a penalty. (Dig. 9
, tit. 2; Windscheid, Pandekten,
§ § 257, 258; Mommsen, Zur Lehre vom