The application of statutes of limitation to proceedings for criminal or civil contempt involves some obscurity and confusion in the modern cases. Legislation has rarely provided expressly for the limitation of contempt proceedings, and their hybrid character has made it difficult to rely with confidence on analogies. The modern tendency of courts has been to differentiate between criminal and civil contempts for many purposes. While the tests for distinguishing civil and criminal proceedings are not yet clear, it seems that the application of limitation acts depends very largely on this distinction.

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