Online Encyclopedia

VICE

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V28, Page 19 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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VICE. (1) (Through Fr. from Lat. vitium), a fault, blemish, more specifically a moral fault, hence depravity, sin, or a particular form of depravity. In the medieval morality plays a special character who acted as an attendant on the devil was styled " the Vice," but sometimes took the name of specific vices such as Envy, Fraud, Iniquity and the like. He was usually dressed in the garb that is identified with that of the domestic fool or jester, and was armed with a wooden sword or dagger. (2) (M.E. vyce, vise or vyse; Fr. vis; Lat. vitis, a vine, or bryony, i.e. something that twists or winds), a portable or fixed tool or appliance which holds or grips an object while it is being worked; a special form of clamp. The tool consists essentially of movable jaws, either jointed by a hinge or moving on slides, and the closing motion is applied by a screw, whence the name, as of something which turns or winds, or by a lever, ratchet, &c. (see Toots). (3) (Lat. vice, in place of, abl. sing. of a noun not found in the nom.), a word chiefly used as a prefix in combination with names of office-holders, indicating a position subordinate or alternative to the chief office-holder, especially one who takes second rank or acts in default of his superior, e.g. vice-chairman, vice=admiral, &c. VICE-CHANCELLOR, the deputy of a chancellor (q.v.). In the English legal system vice-chancellors in equity' were formerly important officials. The first vice-chancellor was appointed in 1813 in order to lighten the work of the lord chancellor and the master of the rolls, who were at that time the sole judges in equity. Two additional vice-chancellors were appointed in 1841. The vice-chancellors sat separately from the lord chancellor and the lords justices, to whom there was an appeal from their decisions. By the Judicature Act 1873 they became judges of the High Court of Justice, retaining their titles, but it was enacted that on the death or retirement of any one his successor was to be styled " judge." Vice-chancellor Sir J. Bacon (1998–1895) was the last to hold the office, resigning in 1886. Vice-chancellor is also the title given to the judge of the duchy court of Lancaster. For the vice-chancellor of a university, see CHANCELLOR.
End of Article: VICE
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