In formulating his general statement of principle in Donoghue v. Stevenson, Lord Atkin took as his starting point the biblical command that you are to love your neighbour, a reference to the parable of the good Samaritan. Some 40 years or so later, Lord Diplock returned to that parable to illustrate the limits of the ‘neighbour’ principle, particularly in the context of omissions. According to Lord Diplock, although the priest and the Levite who passed by on the other side of the road might attract moral censure, they would have incurred no civil liability in English law (Home Office v. Dorset Yacht Co  AC 1004, 1060).
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