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McNaughton Rule

  1. Allen K. Hess

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0533

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Hess, A. K. 2010. McNaughton Rule. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. Auburn University at Montgomery

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


On January 20, 1843, Daniel McNaughton shot Edmund Drummond. That McNaughton shot the secretary of Sir Robert Peel, the actus reus, is indisputable. Mens rea, or the concept that an evil mind must be present for criminal culpability, became crystallized in this case. Thus, a guilty person will have an evil mind, but that same mind must be a mind that is free from mental disease or defect.


  • competence;
  • criminal responsibility;
  • insanity;
  • McNaughton;
  • mens rea