Monday, February 18, 2008

Aw, hail! Who wants to be haled into court, anyway?

Being a spelling bee kind-of-guy, I've always wondered about the correct spelling of one of the the words associated with minimum contacts when determining whether the exercise of personal jurisdiction doesn't offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice. So, tonight, in honor of having worked on Civil Procedure all day, and after all these years, I finally looked it up ...

  • hale 2 (hl)
    tr.v. haled, hal·ing, hales
    1. To compel to go: "In short order the human rights campaign was haled before a high court of indignation" Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.
    2. Archaic To pull, draw, drag, or hoist.

    [Middle English halen, to pull, drag, from Old French haler, of Germanic origin; see kel-2 in Indo-European roots.]

  • hail 1 (hl)
    1. Precipitation in the form of spherical or irregular pellets of ice larger than 5 millimeters (0.2 inches) in diameter.
    2. Something that falls with the force and quantity of a shower of ice and hard snow: a hail of pebbles; a hail of criticism.
    v. hailed, hail·ing, hails
    1. To precipitate in pellets of ice and hard snow.
    2. To fall like hailstones: Condemnations hailed down on them.
    To pour (something) down or forth: They hailed insults at me.

    [Middle English, from Old English hægel, hagol.]

There you have it. You can sleep peacefully tonight.

Welcome, you are!


Anonymous said...

What about "the defendant was HAULED in to court"?

Jared Jacobs said...

Well, HAULED is interesting but there's another definition of 'hail' which, I think, causes confusion with 'hale.'

One can 'hail' a cab. Such an act is to call something which is at a distance. Thus, it is similar to 'haling' someone into court when they are at a distance (another state) by application of minimum contacts, etc.

So, I think the real confusion about 'hale' is how it relates to 'hail.'

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