Definition for PRE-SCRIP'TION

PRE-SCRIP'TION, n. [L. præscriptio. See Prescribe.]

  1. The act of prescribing or directing by rules; or that which is prescribed; particularly, a medical direction of remedies for a disease and the manner of using them; a recipe.
  2. In low, a prescribing for title; the claim of title to a thing by virtue of immemorial use and enjoyment; or the right to a thing derived from such use. Prescription differs from custom, which is a local usage. Prescription is a personal usage, usage annexed to the person. Nothing but incorporeal hereditaments can be claimed by prescription. – Blackstone. The use and enjoyment of navigation and fishery in the sea, for any length of time, does not create a title by prescription. The common right of nations to the use and enjoyment of the sea is imprescriptible; it can not be lost by a particular nation for want of use. – Vattel.
  3. In Scots law, the title to lands acquired by uninterrupted possession for the time which the law declares to be sufficient, or 40 years. This is positive prescription. Negative prescription is the loss or omission of a right by neglecting to use it during the time limited by law. This term is also used for limitation, in the recovery of money due by bond, &c. Obligations are lost by prescription, or neglect of prosecution for the time designated by law. – Encyc.

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