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Evidence. The particulars which accompany a fact. The facts proved are either possible or impossible, ordinary and probable, or extraordinary and improbable, recent or ancient; they may have happened near us, or afar off; they are public or private, permanent or transitory, clear and simple, or complicated; they are always accompanied by circumstances which more or less influence the mind in forming a judgment. And in some instances these circumstances assume the character of irresistible evidence; where, for example, a woman was found dead in a room, with every mark of having met with a violent death, the presence of another person at the scene of action was made manifest by the bloody mark of a left hand visible on her left arm. These points ought to be carefully examined, in order to form a correct opinion. The first question ought to be, is the fact possible? If so, are there any circumstances which render it impossible? If the facts are impossible, the witness ought not to be credited. If, for example, a man should swear that he saw the deceased shoot himself with his own pistol, and upon an examination of the ball which killed him, it should ...

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