Saevitia Law and Legal Definition

Saevitia is a Latin term which means “cruel.” This term is used to indicate cruelty in a marriage as a result of which cohabitation of the spouses is dangerous enough to justify a decree of separation.

Every thing is saevitia that tends to bodily harm makes cohabitation unsafe. The definition of legal cruelty is that which may endanger the life or health of the party. It may be without actual violence. But there must be a reasonable apprehension of bodily hurt. [ Warren v. Warren, 3 Mass. 321 (Mass. 1807)]

It will amount to saevitia if the husband has not actually inflicted any bodily injury, yet practices such obscene and revolting indecencies in the family circle that a modest and pure-minded woman finds these grievances more intolerable to be borne than the most cruel afflictions upon her person. [ Briggs v. Briggs, 24 S.C. 377 (S.C. 1886)]