res ipsa loquitur
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- The import of a thing or situation is obvious.
- (law) A maxim where the very improbable facts of an accident imply the negligence of the defendant. It effectively shifts the burden of proof to the defendant.
maxim where improbable facts imply negligence
From rēs (“thing”) + ipsa (“herself”), the feminine of ipse (“himself”) because rēs is a feminine word + loquitur (“she speaks”) the third-person form of loquor (“I speak”). Literally meaning "the thing itself speaks" or "the matter itself speaks".