TOR'STENSON, LENNART, Count of Ortala (1603-51). A Swedish general, born at Tor stena, West Gothland, August 17, 1603. He became a royal page in 1618 and attended Gustavus Adolphus in most of his earlier cam paigns. When Gustavus entered Germany in 1630, Torstenson was captain of the body-guard; and the brilliant services he rendered at Breiten fcld, the Lee11, and in other battles, were re warded with rapid promotion. Taken prisoner at the storming of Wallenstein's camp near Nurem berg (September 3, 1632), he was released in February of the following year and served till 1635 in Livonia, returning in that year to duty under Bernhard of Weimar and Ban6r, the suc cessors of Gustavus. In 1641, on the death of Ban6r, he was appointed to the command of the Swedish forces in Germany. His military career was marked by brilliancy of conception, fer tility of resource, resolute daring, and extraor dinary rapidity of execution. He invaded Silesia in tlay, 1642, routed the Imperialists at Glogau and Schweidnitz, reduced most of Moravia, and being pressed back into Saxony by the Archduke Leopold William and Piecolomini, turned upon his pursuers (November 2, 1642). and signally defeated them on the historic field of Breiten feld. He then laid Moravia and Austria under contribution. The Emperor, Ferdinand III., de spairing of protecting his territories from Tor stenson, negotiated with Christian IV. of Denmark to make a diversion by invading Sweden; but Torstenson, with characteristic promptitude, left Moravia in September, 1643, traversed Saxony, burst into Holstein, and in less than six weeks subjugated the Danish mainland. The Imperialists under Gallas fol lowed him to aid their allies, but arrived too late, and were routed and driven into Saxony, and again totally defeated at Jiiterbog, in at tempting to bar Torstenson's return into Bo hemia (1644). The Swedish general won a great victory over Hatzfeld at Jankau (March 6, 1645), and carried his arms to the Danube. The Emperor was compelled to flee from Vienna; the Saxons again joined the Swedes; and the Danes, routed at sea as well as on land, sought peace. In 1646 disease compelled Torstenson to resign the command and retire to Sweden, where he was created a count and appointed to vari ous high offices. He died at Stockholm, April 7,
1651. Consult De Peyster, Torstenson (New York, 1886). See THIRTY YEARS' WAR.
TORT (Fr., wrong). A civil wrong other than a breach of contract, which entitles the injured person to a common-law action for damages. It must be admitted that this is rather a general description than an accurate definition of the important legal term before us.
And yet, the present state of English law does not warrant a more specific statement. A breach of contract, without excuse, is undoubted ly wrongful, and entitles the party harmed by such breach to a common-law action for dam ages. But this wrong is always treated under the head of contract (q.v.), and is never spoken of as a tort. The right to damages for breach of contract flows from the agreement of the parties, while that for a tort is conferred by the law, "independent of any previous consent of the wrongdoer to bear the loss occasioned by his act." Again, a trustee who uses trust property for his own benefit without authority wrongs his cestui que trust. As the latter's re dress, however, is not to be obtained in a com mon-law action, but by a proceeding in equity, the term 'tort' is not applied to it. The same is true of an inexcusable refusal to pay salvage as redress, for it is to be sought in admiralty and not at common law. These limitations upon the term, it will be observed, are the results of what may be called accidents of legal pro cedure.
A tort is, as said above, a 'civil' wrong, This clement distinguishes it from a crime. It is true that the same act or omission may subject the wrongdoer to a tort action and also to a crimi nal prosecution. One person deliberately, and without excuse, attacks and wounds another. This assault and battery is a tort, as it gives to the injured person a common-law action in damages, for the invasion of his right of personal security. It is also a crime, as it violates a right of the State by a breach of the peace and by harming one of its citizens.