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Asylum

refuge, fugitive, tion and law

ASYLUM. A refuge; a place of retreat and security. An establishment for the de tention and cure of persons suffering from mental disease—and also a place for the re ception and bringing up of desolate orphans. That some of its inmates are to be orphans will not impart to the institution generally the character of an orphan asylum; [1899] A. C. 107. It is not an educational institu tion ; State v. Bacon, 6 Neb. 286.

In International Law. 1. A place of refuge for fugitive offenders. Every sovereign state has the right to offer an asylum to fugitives from other countries, but there is no cor responding right on the part of the alien to claim asylum. In recent years this right of asylum has been voluntarily limited by most states by treaties providing for the extradi tion (q. v.) of fugitive criminals.

Owing to the privilege of ex-territoriality (q. v.) possessed by ambassadors, their resi dences were in former times frequently made an asylum for fugitive criminals. Although claimed by, and often conceded to, ambas sadors, this right of asylum was not definite ly recognized, and Grotius, in 1625, does not admit it as part of the law of nations (II, c. 18, § 8). In 1726, when the Spanish Govern ment arrested the Duke of Ripperda, who had taken refuge in the residence of the British Embassy, the British Government complained of the act as a violation of in ternational law (Causes Celebres, I, 178).

Within the past century the right of asylum has been rarely exercised, except in Central and South American countries and in the Orient, where it has been frequently granted to political refugees. Even in those coun tries the United States has discouraged its ministers from granting asylum, though it has not absolutely prohibited it.

The qualified privilege of ex-territoriality possessed by public vessels &f a state in for eign waters has led them at times to exercise the of asylum, but international com ity requires that this privilege be not abus ed, and it can, in no case, bet exercised by merchant vessels. II, Moore, §§ 291-307.

2. In time of war, a place of refuge in neu tral territory for belligerent war-ships. See NEUTRALITY.

AT. Expresses position attained by mo tion to, and hence contact, contiguity or co incidence, actual or approximate, in space or time. Being less restricted as to relative position than other prepositions, it may in different constructions assume their office, and so become equivalent according to the context to in, on, near, by, about, under, over, through, from, to, toward, etc. Cent. Diet.