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Couturier v Hastie (1856) 5 HLC 673

A cargo of corn was in transit being shipped from the Mediterranean to England. The owner of the cargo sold the corn to a buyer in London. The cargo had however, perished and been disposed of before the contract was made. The seller sought to enforce payment for the goods on the grounds that the purchaser had attained title to the goods and therefore bore the risk of the goods being damaged, lost or stolen.

The court held that the contract was void because the subject matter of the contract did not exist at the time the contract was made.

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