In law as practiced in countries that follow the English models, a pleading is a formal written statement of a party's claims or defenses to another party's claims in a civil action. The parties' pleadings in a case define the issues to be adjudicated in the action.

The Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) govern pleading in England and Wales. Federal Rules of Civil Procedure govern pleading in United States federal courts. Each state in the United States has its own statutes and rules that govern pleading in the courts of that state.


In the United States, a complaint is the first pleading[1] filed by a plaintiff which initiates a lawsuit. A complaint sets forth the relevant allegations of fact that give rise to one or more legal causes of action along with a prayer for relief and sometimes a statement of damages claimed (an ad quod damnum clause). In some situations, a complaint is called a petition, in which case the party filing it is called the petitioner and the other party is the respondent. In equity, sometimes called chancery, the initial pleading may be called either a petition or a bill of complaint in chancery.

In England and Wales, the first pleading is a Claim Form, issued under either Part 7 or Part 8 of the Civil Procedure Rules, which sets out the nature of the action and the relief sought, and may give brief particulars of the claim. The Claimant also has the option, under Practice Direction 7A.61 to serve Particulars of Claim (a document setting out the allegations which found the cause of action) within 14 days of issue of the Claim Form.

When used in civil proceedings in England and Wales, the term "complaint" refers to the mechanism by which civil proceedings are instituted in the magistrates' court [2] and may be either written or oral.

A demurrer is a pleading (usually filed by a defendant) which objects to the legal sufficiency of the opponent's pleading (usually a complaint) and demands that the court rule immediately about whether the pleading is legally adequate before the party must plead on the merits in response. Since demurrer procedure required an immediate ruling like a motion, many common law jurisdictions therefore went to a narrower understanding of pleadings as framing the issues in a case but not being motions in and of themselves, and replaced the demurrer with the motion to dismiss for failure to state a cause of action or the application to strike out particulars of claim.

An answer is a pleading filed by a defendant which admits or denies the specific allegations set forth in a complaint and constitutes a general appearance by a defendant. In England and Wales, the equivalent pleading is called a Defence.[3]

A defendant may also file a cross-complaint against another defendant named by the plaintiff, and may also file a third-party complaint bring other parties into a case by the process of impleader.

A defendant may file a counter-claim to raise a cause of action to defend, reduce or set off the claim of the plaintiff.


Common law

Common law pleading was the system of civil procedure used in England, which early on developed a strong emphasis on the form of action rather than the cause of action (as a result of the Provisions of Oxford, which severely limited the evolution of the common law writ system). The emphasis was on procedure over substance.

Law and equity evolved as separate judicial systems, each with its own procedures and remedies. Because the types of claims eligible for consideration was capped early during the development of the English legal system, claims that might have been acceptable to the courts' evolving sense of justice often did not match up perfectly with any of the established forms of action. Lawyers had to engage in great ingenuity to shoehorn their clients' claims into existing forms of action. The result was that at common law, pleadings were stuffed full of awkward legal fictions that had little to do with the actual "real-world" facts of the case. The placeholder name John Doe (still commonly used in American pleading to name unknown parties) is a remnant of this period.

In its final form in the 19th century, common law pleading was terribly complex and slow by modern standards. The parties would normally go through several rounds of pleadings before the parties were deemed to have clearly stated their controversy, so that the case was "at issue" and could proceed to trial. A case would begin with a complaint in which the plaintiff alleged the facts entitling him to relief, then the defendant would file any one of a variety of pleas as an answer, followed by a replication from the plaintiff, a rejoinder from the defendant, a surrejoinder from the plaintiff, a rebutter from the defendant, and a surrebutter from the plaintiff. At each stage, a party could file a demurrer to the other's pleading (essentially a request that the court immediately rule on whether the pleading was legally adequate before they had to file a pleading in response) or simply file another pleading in response.[4]

Generally, a plea could be dilatory or peremptory. There were three kinds of dilatory plea: to the jurisdiction, in suspension, or in abatement. The first challenged the court's jurisdiction, the second asked the court to stay the action, and the third asked the court to dismiss the action without prejudice to the other side's right to bring the claims in another action or another court. A peremptory plea had only one kind: a plea in bar. A party making a plea in bar could either traverse the other side's pleading (i.e., deny all or some of the facts pleaded) or confess and avoid it (i.e., admit the facts pleaded but plead new ones that would dispel their effect). A traverse could be general (deny everything) or specific. Either side could plead imparlance in order to get more time to plead on the merits. Once the case was at issue, the defendant could reopen the pleadings in order to plead a newly discovered defense (and start the whole sequence again) by filing a plea puis darrein.

The result of all this complexity was that to ascertain what was "at issue" in a case, a stranger to the case (i.e., such as a newly appointed judge) would have to sift through a huge pile of pleadings to figure out what had happened to the original averments of the complaint and whether there was anything left to be actually adjudicated by the court.


Code pleading was first introduced in 1850 in New York and in 1872 in California, and eventually spread to 22 other states. Code pleading sought to abolish the distinction between law and equity.[5] It unified civil procedure for all types of actions as much as possible. The focus shifted from pleading the right form of action (that is, the right procedure) to pleading the right cause of action (that is, a substantive right to be enforced by the law). Under code pleading, the required elements of each action are supposed to be set out in carefully codified statutes.

Code pleading stripped out most of the legal fictions that had encrusted common law pleading by requiring parties to plead "ultimate facts." This means that to plead a cause of action, the pleader has to plead each element and also allege specific facts which, if proven with evidence at trial, would constitute proof of that element. Failure to provide such detail could lead to dismissal of the case if the defendant successfully demurred to the complaint on the basis that it merely stated "legal conclusions" or "evidentiary facts."

Code pleading also drastically shortened the pleading process. Most of the old common law pleadings were abolished. From now on, a case required only a complaint and an answer, with an optional cross-complaint and cross-answer, and with the demurrer kept as the standard attack on improper pleadings. Instead of piling layers and layers of pleadings and averments on top of each other, a pleading that was attacked by demurrer would either be completely superseded by an amended pleading or would proceed immediately "at issue" as to the validly pleaded parts. This meant that to determine what the parties were currently fighting about, a stranger to a case would no longer have to read the entire case file from scratch, but could (in theory) look only at the most recent version of the complaint filed by the plaintiff, the defendant's most recent answer to that complaint, and any court orders on demurrers to either pleading.

Code pleading was criticized because many lawyers felt that it was too difficult to fully research all the facts needed to bring a complaint before one had even initiated the action, and thus meritorious plaintiffs could not bring their complaints in time before the statute of limitations expired. Code pleading has also been criticized as promoting "hypertechnical reading of legal papers".[6]


Notice pleading is the dominant form of pleading used in the United States today. In 1938, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure were adopted to govern civil procedure in United States federal courts. One goal of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure was to relax the strict rules of code pleading. However, each state also has its own rules of civil procedure, which may require different, looser, or stricter rules in state court.


Louisiana, a state that derives its legal tradition from the Spanish and French (as opposed to English common law), employs a system of fact pleading wherein it is only necessary to plead the facts that give rise to a cause of action. It is not necessary even for the petitioner to identify the cause of action being pleaded. Mere conclusory allegations such as "the defendant was negligent" are not, by themselves, sufficient to sustain a cause of action.

Other states are also fact-pleading jurisdictions. Illinois, for example, requires that a complaint "must assert a legally recognized cause of action and it must plead facts which bring the particular case within that cause of action."[7]


In alternative pleading, legal fiction is employed to permit a party to argue two mutually exclusive possibilities, for example, submitting an injury complaint alleging that the harm to the plaintiff caused by the defendant was so outrageous that it must have either been intended as a malicious attack or, if not, must have been due to gross negligence.


"pleaded" vs "pled"

The use of "pleaded" versus "pled" as the past tense version of "pleading" has been a subject of controversy among many of those that practice law.[8] "Pleaded" is more common in Australian publications, while "pled" is more common in American, British, and Canadian publications.[9] In a 2010 search of the Westlaw legal database, "pled" is used in a narrow majority of cases over "pleaded".[10]

See also


  1. ^ "Example Pleading: AxonHCS". New York State Unified Court System. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  2. ^ s.51 Magistrates Court Act 1980
  3. ^ Civil Procedure Rules, 15.2
  4. ^ Baker, John (January 2002). An Introduction to English Legal History (4 ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 76–79. ISBN 978-0-406-93053-8.
  5. ^ e.g., Hurwitz v. Hurwitz, 78 U.S. App. D.C. 66, 136 F.2d 796, 799 (1943)
  6. ^ United States v. Uni Oil, Inc., 710 F.2d 1078, 1080-81 n.1 (5th Cir. 1983)
  7. ^ Teter v. Clemens, 112 Ill. 2d 252 (1986)
  8. ^ "Popular Threads 2010 | Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division". Retrieved 2018-09-16.
  9. ^ "Pleaded vs. pled – Grammarist". Retrieved 2018-09-16.
  10. ^ Zaretsky, Staci. "Grammer Pole of the Weak: Pleaded v. Pled". Above the Law. Retrieved 2018-09-16.

External links


In law, an allegation is a claim of a fact by a party in a pleading, charge, or defense. Until they can be proved, allegations remain merely assertions.There are also marital allegations: marriage bonds and allegations exist for couples who applied to marry by licence. They do not exist for couples who married by banns. The marriage allegation was the document in which the couple alleged (or frequently just the groom alleged on behalf of both of them) that there were no impediments to the marriage.

Generally, in a civil complaint, a plaintiff alleges facts sufficient to establish all the elements of the claim and thus states a cause of action. The plaintiff must then carry the burden of proof and the burden of persuasion in order to succeed in the lawsuit.

A defendant can allege affirmative defenses in its answer to the complaint.

Other allegations are required in a pleading to establish the correct jurisdiction, personal jurisdiction and subject matter jurisdiction.

Alternative pleading

Alternative pleading (or pleading in the alternative) is the legal term in the law of the United States for a form of pleading that permits a party in a court action to argue multiple possibilities that may be mutually exclusive by making use of legal fiction.

A pleading in the alternative sets forth multiple claims or defenses either hypothetically or alternatively, such that if one of the claims or defenses are held invalid or insufficient, the other claims or defenses should still have to be answered.

Archbold Criminal Pleading, Evidence and Practice

Archbold Criminal Pleading, Evidence and Practice (usually called simply Archbold) is the leading practitioners' text for criminal lawyers in England & Wales and several other common law jurisdictions around the world.

It has been in publication since 1822, when it was first written by John Frederick Archbold, and is currently published by Sweet & Maxwell, a subsidiary of Thomson Reuters. Forty-three revisions were published prior to 1992 and since then it has been published annually. Its authority is such that it is often quoted in court.

The team of authors is made up of experienced barristers, QCs and judges, headed up by general editor P.J. Richardson QC, an experienced barrister who has overseen each edition of Archbold since 1982.

Ashcroft v. Iqbal

Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009), was a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court held that top government officials were not liable for the actions of their subordinates without evidence that they ordered the allegedly discriminatory activity. At issue was whether current and former federal officials, including FBI Director Robert Mueller and former United States Attorney General John Ashcroft, were entitled to qualified immunity against an allegation that they knew of or condoned racial and religious discrimination against individuals detained after the September 11 attacks. The decision also "transformed civil litigation in the federal courts" by making it much easier for courts to dismiss individuals' suits.


In legal terminology, a complaint is any formal legal document that sets out the facts and legal reasons (see: cause of action) that the filing party or parties (the plaintiff(s)) believes are sufficient to support a claim against the party or parties against whom the claim is brought (the defendant(s)) that entitles the plaintiff(s) to a remedy (either money damages or injunctive relief). For example, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) that govern civil litigation in United States courts provide that a civil action is commenced with the filing or service of a pleading called a complaint. Civil court rules in states that have incorporated the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure use the same term for the same pleading.

In Civil Law, a “complaint” is the very first formal action taken to officially begin a lawsuit. This written document contains the allegations against the defense, the specific laws violated, the facts that led to the dispute, and any demands made by the plaintiff to restore justice.In some jurisdictions, specific types of criminal cases may also be commenced by the filing of a complaint, also sometimes called a criminal complaint or felony complaint. Most criminal cases are prosecuted in the name of the governmental authority that promulgates criminal statutes and enforces the police power of the state with the goal of seeking criminal sanctions, such as the State (also sometimes called the People) or Crown (in Commonwealth realms). In the United States, the complaint is often associated with misdemeanor criminal charges presented by the prosecutor without the grand jury process. In most U.S. jurisdictions, the charging instrument presented to and authorized by a grand jury is referred to as an indictment.


A demurrer is a pleading in a lawsuit that objects to or challenges a pleading filed by an opposing party. The word demur means "to object"; a demurrer is the document that makes the objection. Lawyers informally define a demurrer as a defendant saying "So what?" to the pleading.Typically, the defendant in a case will demur to the complaint, but it is also possible for the plaintiff to demur to an answer. The demurrer challenges the legal sufficiency of a cause of action in a complaint or of an affirmative defense in an answer. If a cause of action in a complaint does not state a cognizable claim (e.g., the claim is nonsense) or if it does not state all the required elements, then the challenged cause of action or possibly the entire complaint can be thrown out (informally speaking) at the demurrer stage as not legally sufficient. A demurrer is typically filed near the beginning of a case in response to the plaintiff filing a complaint or the defendant answering the complaint.

In common law, a demurrer was the pleading through which a defendant challenged the legal sufficiency of a complaint in criminal or civil cases. Today, however, the pleading has been discontinued in many jurisdictions, including the United Kingdom, the U.S. federal court system, and most U.S. states (though some states, including California, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, retain it). In criminal cases, a demurrer was considered a common law due process right, to be heard and decided before the defendant was required to plead "not guilty," or make any other pleading in response, without having to admit or deny any of the facts alleged.

A demurrer generally assumes the truth of all material facts alleged in the complaint and the defendant cannot present evidence to the contrary, even if those facts appear to be obvious fabrications by the plaintiff or are likely to be easily disproved during litigation. That is, the point of the demurrer is to test whether a cause of action or affirmative defense as pleaded is legally insufficient, even if all facts pleaded are assumed to be true.

The sole exception to the no-evidence rule is that a court may take judicial notice of certain things. For example, the court can take judicial notice of commonly known facts not reasonably subject to challenge, such as the Gregorian calendar, or of public records, such as a published legislative report showing the intent of the legislature in enacting a particular statute.

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (officially abbreviated Fed. R. Civ. P.; colloquially FRCP) govern civil procedure in United States district courts. The FRCP are promulgated by the United States Supreme Court pursuant to the Rules Enabling Act, and then the United States Congress has seven months to veto the rules promulgated or they become part of the FRCP. The Court's modifications to the rules are usually based upon recommendations from the Judicial Conference of the United States, the federal judiciary's internal policy-making body. Although federal courts are required to apply the substantive law of the states as rules of decision in cases where state law is in question, the federal courts almost always use the FRCP as their rules of civil procedure. (States may determine their own rules, which apply in state courts, although 35 of the 50 states have adopted rules that are based on the FRCP.)

The Rules, established in 1938, replaced the earlier procedures under the Federal Equity Rules and the Conformity Act (28 USC 724 (1934)) merging the procedure for cases, in law and equity. The Conformity Act required that procedures in suits at law conform to state practice usually the Field Code and common law pleading systems. Significant revisions have been made to the FRCP in 1948, 1963, 1966, 1970, 1980, 1983, 1987, 1993, 2000, and 2006. (The FRCP contains a notes section that details the changes of each revision since 1938, explaining the rationale behind the language.) The revisions that took effect in December 2006 made practical changes to discovery rules to make it easier for courts and litigating parties to manage electronic records.

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure were amended in 1966 to unify the civil and admiralty procedure, and added the Supplemental Rules for Certain Admiralty and Maritime Claims (now Supplemental Rules for Admiralty or Maritime Claims and Asset Forfeiture Actions).

The FRCP were completely rewritten, effective December 1, 2007, under the leadership of a committee headed by law professor and editor of Black's Law Dictionary, Bryan A. Garner, for the avowed purpose of making them easier to understand. The style amendments were not intended to make substantive changes in the rules.Effective December 1, 2009 substantial amendments were made to rules 6, 12, 13, 14, 15, 23, 27, 32, 38, 48, 50, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 59, 62, 65, 68, 71.1, 72 and 81. While rules 48 and 62.1 were added. Rule 1 (f) was abrogated. The majority of the amendments affect various timing requirements and change how some deadlines are calculated. The most significant changes are to Rule 6.

Before the FRCP were established, common-law pleading was more formal, traditional, and particular in its phrases and requirements. For example, a plaintiff bringing a trespass suit would have to mention certain key words in his complaint or risk having it dismissed with prejudice. In contrast, the FRCP is based upon a legal construction called notice pleading, which is less formal, is created and modified by legal experts, and is far less technical in requirements. In notice pleading, the same plaintiff bringing suit would not face dismissal for lack of the exact legal term, as long as the claim itself was legally actionable. The policy behind this change is to simply give "notice" of grievances and to leave the details for later in the case. This acts in the interest of equity by concentrating on the actual law rather than the exact construction of pleas.

Thirty-five states have adopted procedural codes based on the Federal Rules, but sometimes there are slight variations.

In addition to notice pleading, a minority of states (e.g., California) use an intermediate system known as code pleading, which is a system older than notice pleading and which is based upon legislative statute. It tends to straddle the gulf between obsolete common-law pleading and modern notice pleading. Code pleading places additional burdens on a party to plead the "ultimate facts" of its case, laying out the party's entire case and the facts or allegations underlying it. Notice pleading, by contrast, simply requires a "short and plain statement" showing only that the pleader is entitled to relief. (FRCP 8(a)(2)). One important exception to this rule is that, when a party alleges fraud, it must plead the facts of the alleged fraud with particularity. (FRCP 9(b)).

(The Field Code, which was adopted between 1848 and 1850, was an intermediate step between common law and modern rules, created by New York attorney David Dudley Field. Field's code, among other reforms, merged law and equity proceedings.)

Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution

The Fifth Amendment (Amendment V) to the United States Constitution addresses criminal procedure and other aspects of the Constitution. It was ratified in 1791 as part of the Bill of Rights. The Fifth Amendment originally applied only to the federal government, but the Supreme Court has applied most of the protections of this amendment to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

One provision of the Fifth Amendment requires that felonies be tried only upon indictment by a grand jury. Another provision, the Double Jeopardy Clause, provides the right of defendants to be tried only once in federal court for the same offense. The self-incrimination clause provides various protections against self-incrimination, including the right of an individual to not serve as a witness in a criminal case in which they are the defendant. "Pleading the Fifth" is a colloquial term often used to invoke the self-incrimination clause when witnesses to decline to answer questions where the answers might incriminate them. In the 1966 case of Miranda v. Arizona, the Supreme Court held that the self-incrimination clause requires the police to issue a Miranda warning to criminal suspects interrogated while under police custody. The Fifth Amendment also contains the Takings Clause, which allows the federal government to take private property for public use if the government provides "just compensation."

Like the Fourteenth Amendment, the Fifth Amendment includes a due process clause stating that no person shall "be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law." The Fifth Amendment's due process clause applies to the federal government, while the Fourteenth Amendment's due process clause applies to state governments. The Supreme Court has interpreted the Fifth Amendment's Due Process Clause as providing two main protections: procedural due process, which requires government officials to follow fair procedures before depriving a person of life, liberty, or property, and substantive due process, which protects certain fundamental rights from government interference. The Supreme Court has also held that the Due Process Clause contains a prohibition against vague laws and an implied equal protection requirement similar to the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause.

Guilt (law)

In criminal law, guilt is the state of being responsible for the commission of an offense. Legal guilt is entirely externally defined by the state, or more generally a "court of law". Being "guilty" of a criminal offense means that one has committed a violation of criminal law, or performed all the elements of the offense set out by a criminal statute. The determination that one has committed that violation is made by an external body (a "court of law") and is, therefore, as definitive as the record-keeping of the body. So the most basic definition is fundamentally circular: a person is guilty of violating a law, if a court says so.

Philosophically, guilt in criminal law is a reflection of a functioning society and its ability to condemn individuals' actions. It rests fundamentally on a presumption of free will, in which individuals choose actions and are, therefore, subjected to external judgement of the rightness or wrongness of those actions.

An adjudication of guilt is more than a factual determination that the defendant pulled a trigger, took a bicycle, or sold heroin. It is a moral judgment that the individual is blameworthy. Our collective conscience does not allow punishment where it cannot impose blame. Our concept of blameworthiness rests on assumptions that are older than the Republic: man is naturally endowed with these two great faculties, understanding and liberty of will. Historically, our substantive criminal law is based on a theory of punishing the viscious [sic] will. It postulates a free agent confronted with a choice between doing right and wrong, and choosing freely to do wrong.

See also Cotton, Michael, A FOOLISH CONSISTENCY: KEEPING DETERMINISM OUT OF THE CRIMINAL LAW, 15 B.U. Pub. Int. L.J. 1 ("A substantial body of scholarship has concerned itself with the importance of free will to the theory of the criminal law. Even given the importance of the subject, the quantity of attention is surprising because of the lack of fundamental disagreement among scholars, who overwhelmingly endorse the criminal law's assumption of free will.")

Larry Nassar

Lawrence Gerard Nassar (born August 16, 1963) is an American convicted serial child molester who was the USA Gymnastics national team doctor and an osteopathic physician at Michigan State University.

Nassar's cumulative criminal acts of sexual assault were the basis of the USA Gymnastics sex abuse scandal, in which he was accused of molesting at least 250 girls and young women and 1 young man including a number of well-known Olympic gymnasts, dating as far back as 1992. He has admitted to ten of the accusations.

In July 2017, Nassar was sentenced to 60 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to child pornography charges. On January 24, 2018, Nassar was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in a Michigan state prison after pleading guilty to seven counts of sexual assault of minors. On February 5, 2018, he was sentenced to an additional 40 to 125 years in prison after pleading guilty to an additional three counts of sexual assault. His federal and state sentences are to run consecutively.


A lawsuit is a proceeding by a party or parties against another in the civil court of law.

The archaic term "suit in law" is found in only a small number of laws still in effect today, such as the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution.

The term lawsuit is used in reference to a civil action brought in a court of law in which a plaintiff, a party who claims to have incurred loss as a result of a defendant's actions, demands a legal or equitable remedy. The defendant is required to respond to the plaintiff's complaint. If the plaintiff is successful, judgment is in the plaintiff's favor, and a variety of court orders may be issued to enforce a right, award damages, or impose a temporary or permanent injunction to prevent an act or compel an act. A declaratory judgment may be issued to prevent future legal disputes.

A lawsuit may involve dispute resolution of private law issues between individuals, business entities or non-profit organizations. A lawsuit may also enable the state to be treated as if it were a private party in a civil case, as plaintiff, or defendant regarding an injury, or may provide the state with a civil cause of action to enforce certain laws.

The conduct of a lawsuit is called litigation. The plaintiffs and defendants are called litigants and the attorneys representing them are called litigators. The term litigation may also refer to a Criminal procedure.

Legal practice

Legal practice is sometimes used to distinguish the body of judicial or administrative precedents, rules, policies, customs, and doctrines from legislative enactments such as statutes and constitutions which might be called "laws" in the strict sense of being commands to the general public, rather than only to a set of parties.

Nolo contendere

Nolo contendere is a legal term that comes from the Latin phrase for "I do not wish to contend" and it is also referred to as a plea of no contest.

In criminal trials in certain United States jurisdictions, it is a plea where the defendant neither admits nor disputes a charge, serving as an alternative to a pleading of guilty or not guilty. A no-contest plea, while not technically a guilty plea, has the same immediate effect as a guilty plea and is often offered as a part of a plea bargain. In many jurisdictions a plea of nolo contendere is not a typical right and carries various restrictions on its use.

Outline of civil law (common law)

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to civil law:

Civil law – branch of the law. In common law countries such as England, Wales, and the United States, the term refers to non-criminal law. The law relating to civil wrongs and quasi-contracts is part of the civil law. The law of property is embraced by civil law. Civil law can, like criminal law, be divided into substantive law and procedural law. The rights and duties of individuals amongst themselves is the primary concern of civil law. It is often suggested that civil proceedings are taken for the purpose of obtaining compensation for injury, and may thus be distinguished from criminal proceedings, whose purpose is to inflict punishment. However, exemplary or punitive damages may be awarded in civil proceedings.


A petition is a request to do something, most commonly addressed to a government official or public entity. Petitions to a deity are a form of prayer called supplication.

In the colloquial sense, a petition is a document addressed to some official and signed by numerous individuals. A petition may be oral rather than written, or may be transmitted via the Internet.

Pleading (Elgar)

"Pleading" is a poem written by Arthur L. Salmon, and set to music by the English composer Edward Elgar in 1908, as his Op.48.

This is one of the most popular of Elgar's songs. Elgar had returned home at the end of September 1908, feeling depressed after taking the score of his first Symphony to the publishers. Arthur Salmon had sent him a book of poems, and the loneliness expressed in "Pleading" fitted his mood. He finished the song within a week, and added the orchestration the next month. He wrote the song for, and dedicated it to his great friend Lady Maud Warrender.

It was published by Novello & Co. It has been referred to as Elgar's Op. 48, No. 1, as if a set of songs had been planned for Lady Maud Warrender, but no other Op. 48 songs are known.

Special pleading

Special pleading is a form of fallacious argument that involves an attempt to cite something as an exception to a generally accepted rule, principle, etc. without justifying the exception.The lack of criticism may be a simple oversight (e.g., the reasons are thought to be obvious) or an application of a double standard.

Ultimate Human

Ultimate Human (originally titled Ultimate Hulk vs. Iron Man) is an American comic book limited series published by Marvel Comics. The limited series set in the Ultimate Universe, is written by Warren Ellis and pencilled by Cary Nord.

The series deals with a desperate Bruce Banner pleading with Tony Stark to cure him of his Hulk affliction.

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