Maxims and Axioms

A maxim is a saying that is widely accepted as a general truth, while an axiom is a statement that is accepted as true without requiring proof, serving as a basis for further reasoning and arguments. The nuance between the two lies in the nature of their meanings: a maxim is an expressive, explicit truth, while an axiom carries an implicit, objective truth. In summary, a maxim is a brief expression of a general truth, whereas an axiom is a self-evident truth that requires no proof. Source: Perplexity AI

See also

0.1 Converted Collection of Legal Maxims in Law and Equity ( PDFDrive )_ocred (10Mb pdf, Harvard Law Library – A collection of  Legal Maxims)

Ten essential maxims or precepts in commercial law
Maxims of Law

The first of these is expressed in Exodus
20:15; Lev. 19:13; Mat. 10:10; Luke 10″7; II Tim. 2:6. Legal maxim: “It is against equity for freemen not to have the free disposal of their own property.”

2. The second maxim is “Equality before the law” or more precisely, ALL ARE EQUAL UNDER THE LAW. (God’s Law – Moral and Natural Law). Exodus 21:23-25; Lev. 24: 17-21; Deut. 1;17, 19:21; Mat. 22:36-40; Luke 10:17; Col. 3:25. “No one is above the law”. This is founded on both Natural and Moral law and is binding on everyone. For someone to say , or acts as though, he is “above the law” is insane. This is the major insanity in the world today. Man continues to live, act, believe, and form systems, organizations, governments, laws and processes which presume to be able to supercede or abrogate Natural or Moral Law. But, under commercial law, Natural and Moral Law are binding on everyone, and no one can escape it. Commerce, by the law of nations, ought to be common, and not to be converted into a monopoly and the private gain of the few.

3. This one is one of the most comforting maxims one could have, and your foundation for your peace-of-mind and your security and your capacity to win and triumph — to get your remedy — in this business.
(Exodus 20:16; Ps. 117:2; John 8:32; II Cor. 13:8 ).Truth is sovereign — and the Sovereign tells only the truth. Your word is your bond. If truth were not sovereign in commerce, i.e., all human action and inter-relations, there would be no basis for anything. No basis for law and order, no basis no accountability, there would be no standards, no capacity to resolve anything. It would mean “anything goes”, “each man for himself”, and “nothing matters”. That’s worse than the law of the jungle.
Commerce. “To lie is to go against the mind”. Oriental proverb: “Of all that is good, sublimity is supreme.”

(Lev. 5:4-5; Lev. 6:3-5; Lev. 19:11-13: Num. 30:2; Mat. 5:33; James 5: 12). An affidavit is your solemn expression of your truth. In commerce, an affidavit must be accompanied and must underlay and form the foundation for any commercial transaction whatsoever. There can be no valid commercial transaction without someone putting their neck on the line and stated, “this is true, correct, complete and not meant to mislead.” When you issue an affidavit, it is a two edged sword; it cuts both ways. Someone has to take responsibility for saying that it is a real situation. It can be called a true bill, as they say in the Grand Jury. When you issue an affidavit in commerce you get the power of an affidavit. You also incur the liability, because this has to be a situation where other people might be adversely affected by it. Things change by your affidavit, in which are going to affect people’s lives. If what you say in your affidavit is, in fact, not true, then those who are adversely affected can come back at you with justifiable recourse because you lied. You have told a lie as if it were the truth. People depend on your affidavit and then they have lost because you lied.
(12 Pet. 1:25; Heb. 6:13-15;) Claims made in your affidavit, if not rebutted, emerge as the truth of the matter. Legal Maxim: “He who does not deny, admits.”

(Heb. 6:16-17;). There is nothing left to resolve. Any proceeding in a court, tribunal, or arbitration forum consists of a contest, or duel, of commercial affidavits wherein the points remaining unrebutted in the end stand as truth and matters to which the judgment of the law is applied.

(Heb. 4:16; Phil. 4:6; Eph. 6:19-21). No one is a mind reader. You have to put your position out there, you have to state what the issue is, to have someone to talk about and resolve. Legal Maxim: “He who fails to assert his rights has none.)

8. The primary users of commercial law and those who best understand and codified it in Western Civilization are the Jews. This is Mosaic Law they have had for more than 3500 years past which is based upon Babylonian commerce. This one is: HE WHO LEAVES THE BATTLEFIELD FIRST LOSES BY DEFAULT.
Book of Job; Mat. 10:22; This means that an affidavit which is unrebutted point for point stands as “truth in commerce” because it hasn’t been rebutted and has left the battlefield. Governments allegedly exist to resolve disputes, conflicts and truth. Governments allegedly exist to be substitutes for the dueling field and the battlefield for so disputes, conflicts of affidavits of truth are resolved peaceably, reasonably instead of by violence. So people can take their disputes into court and have them all opened up and resolved, instead of going out and marching ten paces and turning to kill or injure. Legal Maxim: “He who does not repel a wrong when he can, occasions it”.

Nothing ventured nothing gained. A person must put himself on the line assume a position, take a stand, as regards the matter at hand. and One cannot realize the potential gain without also exposing himself to thew potential of loss. (One who is not damaged, put at risk, or willing to swear an oath on his commercial liability to claim authority) (Acts 7, life/death of Stephen). for the truth of his statements and legitimacy of his actions has no basis to assert claims or charges and forfeits all credibility and right Legal Maxim: “He who bears the burden ought also to derive the benefit”.

10. SATISFACTION OF A LIEN. In commerce a lien or claim can be satisfied in any one of three ways. (Gen. 2-3; Mat. 4; Revelation.).
By someone rebutting your affidavit, with another affidavit of his own, point by point, until the matter is resolved as to whose is correct, in case of non-resolution.
You convene a Sheriff’s common law jury, based on the Seventh Amendment, concerning a dispute involving a claim of more than $20. Or, you can use three disinterested parties to make judgment.
The only other way to satisfy a lien is to pay it.
Legal Maxim: “if the plaintiff does not prove his case, the defendant is absolved”.

Commercial Law is non-judicial. This is pre-judicial (not prejudice). This is timeless. This is the base, the foundation beneath which any government or any of their court systems can possibly exist or function.
That means what the courts are doing, and what all governments are ultimately adjudicating and making rules about, are these basic rules of Commercial Law. When you go into court and place your hand on the Bible you say, “I swear the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth . . .” you have just sworn a Commercial Affidavit.
It’s the conflict between Commercial Affidavits of Truth that gives the court something to talk about, that forms the entire basis of its action, and its being there , in their venue. Hence, one of the reasons attorneys always create controversy.
No court and no judge can overturn or disregard or abrogate somebody’s Affidavit of Truth. The only one who has any capacity or right or responsibility or knowledge to rebut your Affidavit of Truth is the one who is adversely affected by it. It’s his job, his right, his responsibility to speak for himself. To issue his own affidavit because no one can speak it for him. No one else can know what your truth is or has the free-will responsibility to state it. This is YOUR job.

but wait, there are more Maxims in Law…

Consensus facit legem.
Consent makes the law.
A contract is a law between the parties, which can acquire force only by consent.
Non videntur qui errant consentire.
He who errs is not considered as consenting.
Nihil tam naturale est quam eo genere quidque dissolvere quo colligatum est; ideo verborum obligatio verbis tollitur; nudi consensus obligatio contrario consensu dissolvitur.
Nothing is so natural as to dissolve anything in the way in which it was bound together; therefore the obligation of words is taken away by words; the obligation of mere consent is dissolved by the contrary consent.

Ancient Legal Maxims and Modern Human Rights
Published in the Campbell Law Review, Vol. 18, Iss. 1 [1996], Art. 2

Dr. J. Stanley McQuade
Campbell University School of Law

Axioms concerning the judicial office

De fide et de officio judicis non recipiturquestio sed de scientia sive de errorejuris sive facta.
The good faith and office of a judge cannot be questioned, only his knowledge of the law or of the facts.
Judicium a non suo judice datum nullius est momento
Anything in a judgment which goes beyond what is proper to the occasion carries no weight.
Boni judicis est ampliarejurisdictionem.
A good judge should enlarge his jurisdiction.
Ancupias verborum sunt iudice indigne.
Quibbling about words is unseemly in a judge.
Ad questionem facti non respondent iudices, ad questionem legis non respondent juratores.
Judges do not decide questions of fact and juries do not decide matter of law.
Nemo debet esse judex in sua propria causa.
No one should be a judge in his own case.
Audi alterampartem
Listen to both sides.
In omnis poenalibusjudiciis et aetati et imprudentiae succuritur.
In deciding on punishments age and inexperience should be taken into consideration.
Tutius semper est errare in aequietando quam in puniendo exparte misercordiae quam ex part justitiae.
It is safer to err in acquitting than in condemning, to lean towards mercy rather than justice.
Discretio est discernere per legem quid sit justum.
Discretion is to see through the law to what is just.
In favorem libertatis et innocenti omnia praesumuntur.
All presumptions are in favor of liberty and innocence.
In judicio non creditur nisi juratis.
Nothing will be judicially believed unless it has been judicially considered.

Axioms relating to property law

Aedificare in tuo proprio solo non licet quod alteri nocet.
Build on your own property but not so as to harm someone else’s.
Alienatio rei praeferturjuri accrescendi.
The law favors alienation of property rather than accumulation.
Aliud est possidere, aliud esse in possessione.
It is one thing to possess, another to be in possession.
Bonae fidei possessor in id tantum quod ad se pervenerit tenetur.
A bona fide possessor, so far as is appropriate, keeps.
Cuius est solum, eius est usque ad coelum et ad inferos.
Whoever owns land owns it up to heaven and down to hell.
Dona clandestina sunt semper suspiciosa.
Clandestine gifts are always suspicious.
Quando plus fit quam fieri debet videtur etiam illud fieri quod faciendum est.
When one does more than he needs he is deemed to have fulfilled his obligations.
Quod ab initio vitiosum est non potest tractu temporis convalescere.
What was bad from the beginning isn’t cured by time:
Partus sequitur ventrem.
The offspring goes with the mother.
Non dat qui non habet.
You can’t give what you haven’t got.
Transit terra cur onere.
Encumbrances go with the land.
Res sua nemini servat.
You can’t transact a mortgage with yourself.
Sic utere tuo ut alienum non laedas.
Do not use your property in a way that injures your neighbor.

Constitutional principles

Domus sua est tutissimum refugium.
A man’s home is his castle.
Nemo patriam in qua natus est excusere possit.
No one is allowed to forswear allegiance to their native land.
Semel civis semper civis.
Once a citizen always a citizen.
Protectio trahit subjectionem et subjectio protectionem.
Protection implies subjection and subjection protection.
Salus populi suprema lex.
The public welfare is the supreme law.
Perpetua lex est nulla lex.
A perpetual law is no law.
Qui lege communi derogant stricte interpretantur.
Derogations of common law are strictly construed.
Nova constitutio, futuris formam imponere debet non praeteriis.
A new statute should govern the future not the past.


Incaute factum juro non facto habetur.
What is negligently done is deemed at law as not done at all.
Novatio non praesumitur.
Renewal is not presumed.
Pactis privatisjuri publico non derogatur.
Private agreements do not abrogate public law.
Quando abest provisio partis adest provisio legis.
When the parties fail to make provision the law supplies the want.
Pacta quae contra leges vel contra bonos mores fiunt non sunt observanda.
Contracts contrary to law or good morals are not to be upheld.
In contractis tacite insunt quae sunt moris et consuetudinis.
Usual and customary provisions will be read into contracts.
Nihil perfectum dum aliquid restat agendum.
Nothing is done till it is completed.
Delegatus debitor est odiosus in lege.
A delegate debtor is hateful in law.
Simplex commendatio non obligat.
Puffing is not warranting.
Scientia utrinque per pares contrahentes facit.
Equal knowledge makes the contractors equal.
Vicarius non habet vicarium.
A delegate can’t delegate.
Aliud est celare, aliud est tacere.
It is one thing to be silent, another to conceal.
Clausulae inconsuetae semper inducunt suspicionem.
Unusual clauses always excite suspicion.

Criminal Law

Spoliatus debet ante omnia restitui.
Restitution before all else.
Nemo tenetur seipsum accusare.
No one is required to accuse himself.


Quod non apparet non est.
What isn’t shown doesn’t exist.
Stabat praesumptio donec probetur in contrarium.
A presumption stands till the contrary is proved.
Vox emissa volat – litera scripta manet.
The spoken word flies away, the written remains.
Acta exteriora indicant interiorasecreta.
External acts reveal the inner secrets.
Affirmante non negante incumbit probatio.
He who affirms, not he who denies, has the burden of proof.
Allegans contrarianon est audiendus.
A witness who contradicts himself is not to be heard.
Allegare non debuit quod probatum non relevant.
One ought not to allege what, even if proved, would not be relevant.
Index animi sermo.
Intention is manifested by words.
Lex non requirit verificare quod apparet curiae.
The law does not require proof of the obvious.
Allegens suam turpitudinem non est audiendus.
A witness alleging his own wrongdoing shall not be heard.

Inheritance and wills

Haeres legitimus est quem nuptiae demonstrant.
The legitimate heir is the one shown to be so by marriage.
Qui in testamentis ita sunt scripta ut intelligi non possint ac si scripta non essent.
Anything written in a will which is unintelligible is as if it was not written.
Nemo presumitur alienam posteritatem suae praetulisse.
No one is presumed to favor another person’s descendants over his own.
Ambulatoria est voluntas defuncti usque ad supremam vitae exitum.
The testator can change his will right up till his last breath.
Haereditas numquam ascendit.
Heredity never ascends.
Linea recta semper praefertur transversali.
Vertical lines (of descent) are always preferred to transverse.

Documentary interpretation

Qui haeret in litera haeret in cortice.
Literal interpretation is superficial
Qui non valeant singula conjuncta juvant.
Things obscure on their own are clear when taken together.
Maledicto expositio quae corrumpit textum.
A bad interpretation twists the text.
Semper in dubiis benigniorapraeferenda.
In doubt the kindlier interpretation is to be preferred.
Generaliaspecialia derogant.
Particular clauses derogate from general ones.
Certum est quod certum reddi potest.
What can be made certain is certain.
Divinatio non interpretatioest quae omnino recedit a littera.
To depart altogether from the literal meaning is second sight not interpretation.
Nemo enim aliquam partem recte intelligere potest antequam totum iterum atque iterum perlegerit.
No one can understand any part who has not read through the whole again and again.
Benignae sunt interpretationespropter simplicitatem laicorum ut res magis valeat quam pereat.
Interpretation should be kindly, keeping in mind the inexperience of layfolk in order that their transactions should stand and not fall.

Of law in general

Ratio enim anima legis, cessante ratione cessat et lex.
Reason is the life of the law, when the reason changes so does the law.
Lex non cogit ad impossibilia.
The law does not require the impossible.
Ignorantia facti excusat, ignorantialegis non excusat.
Ignorance of the facts is an excuse in law, ignorance of the law is not.
Omnis innovatio plus novitate perturbat quam utilitate prodest.
Every innovation in the law produces more harm by its novelty than benefit from its usefulness.
Damnum non est injuria.
Mere harm is not actionable wrong.
Misera est servitus ubi jus est vagum et incertum.
The law performs miserably when it is vague and uncertain.
Qui rationem in omnibus quaerunt rationem subvertunt.
One who seeks reasons for everything undermines reason.
Lex plus laudetur quando ratione probatur.
The law is most esteemed when it is supported by reason.
Nihil quod inconveniens est licitum.
Nothing is permitted which is unfitting.
Nimia subtilitas in jure reprobaturet talia certitudo certitudinem confundit.
Excessive subttlety in law is to be avoided and too much certainty confounds certainty.
Apices juris non sunt jura.
Very fine points of the law are not the law.
Summum jus summum injuria.
The limits of the law are the limits of your injuries.
Non in tabulis est jus.
The whole of the law is not contained in the law books.
Qui peccat ebrius luat sobrius.
Sin drunk pay sober.
Via trita via tuta.
The well trodden path is the safe one.
Qui non habet in aere luat in corpore.
If you have no money you pay with your body.

Marriage and family

Matrimonia debent esse libera.
Marriage should be of ones own free will.
Consensus non concubitus facit matrimonium.
Consent not cohabitation makes a marriage.
Consentire matrimonio non possunt infra annos nubiles.
Parties below marriageble age can’t consent to marriage.
Pater est quem nuptiae demonstrant.
Your father is the husband of your mother.
Whoso bolleth myn kyn.
The calf is mine
My cow, my calf (applied to presumption of legitimacy).


Summa ratio est quae pro religione facit.
To promote religion is the supreme legal principle.
Ecclesia melliorarinot deterioraripotest.
The church is to be bettered not diminished.
Dies dominicus non est juridicus.
The Lord’s day is not a day for legal business.


Furiosi nulla voluntas est.
The insane do not have free will.
Furiosus solo furore punitur.
A madman is punished only by his madness.
Furiosus absentis loco est.
The insane are not present (i.e. cannot be witnesses).


Ordine placitande servato servatur et jus.
When proper procedure is observed the law is observed.
Interest reipublicae ut finis sit litium.
It is in the public interest that litigation should not go on and on.
Qui sentit commodum sentire debet et onus.
He who reaps the benefit should carry the burden.
Abusus not tollit usus.
Abuse of anything is not an argument against its use.
Ad ea quae fraequentius acciduntjuraadaptur.
The laws are devised for things which happen frequently.
Qui non prohibet quod prohibere potest assentire videtur.
He who is able to prevent something and does not will be deemed to have agreed to it.
Malitia supplet aetatem.
Malice causes minors to be deemed of age.
Lex citius tolerare vult privaturm damnum quam publicum malum.
The law will more easily tolerate a private harm than a public evil.
Consensus tollit errorem.
Consent bars error.
In casu extremae necessitatis omnia sunt communia.
In cases of extreme necessity all goods are communal.
Lex spectat naturae ordinem.
The law pays regard to the natural ordering (of things).
Angliae jura in omni casu libertate dant favorem.
The laws of England favor liberty in all cases.
Cogitationispoenam nemo patitur.
The thoughts are not punishable.
Ubi damna dantur, victus victori in expensis condemnari debet.
When damages are awarded, the loser ought to pay the costs of the winner.


Actio non datur non damnificando.
No action without damage.
Actus Dei nemini nocet.
You can’t complain about “Act of God”.
Injuria non excusat injuriam.
One wrong does not justify another.
Lex non favet votis delicatorum.
The law does not encourage the whims of the fastidious.
Qui jure suo utitur nemini facit injuriam.
You are entitled to exercise your legal rights.
Qui facit per aliam facit per se.
To act through another is as if you acted yourself.
Remoto impedimento emergit actio.
When the lights turn green you should go.
Corporalisinjuria non recipit aestimationem de futuro.
You are not allowed to speculate about future bodily harm.
Non decipitur qui scit se decipi.
He who knows he is being lied to is not deceived.
Alterius circumventio alii non praebet actio.
One person getting the better of another is not sufficient ground for an action.
Injuria non praesumitur.
Injury must be proved.
Qui vult decipi decipiatur.
Let him who is willing to be deceived be deceived.
Fraus est celare fraudem.
It is fraud to conceal fraud.
Nemo tenetur divinare.
No one is deemed to have a crystal ball.
Qui tacet consentire videtur.
Silence implies consent.
Intentia caeca mala.
Culpable recklessness is intent.

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