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in the USSR, a legal means exercised by state agencies to protect the personal and property rights and interests of citizens.

Among the purposes of guardianship are the raising of minors under 15 years of age and the protection of their personal and property rights and interests. Guardianship is instituted in the event of death or illness of the parents, in case of deprivation of parental rights, or in all other cases where children have been left without care by parents evading their responsibilities or for any other reason. Guardians are obliged to ensure the physical well-being, education, and preparation for socially useful activity of their wards and to defend their rights and interests. Guardians are not appointed for children who are being raised by children’s institutions; guardianship is assigned in such cases to the administration of these institutions.

Another purpose of guardianship is protection of the personal and property rights and interests of adults who have been recognized by a court as incapable, as in cases of mental illness or feeblemindedness. The guardian of an incapable person is obliged to ensure the care and treatment of the ward. Guardianship is established by a special decision of the executive committee of the local soviet at the place of residence of either the guardian or the person in need of guardianship. Such functions as examining the living conditions of the person in need of guardianship, searching for a guardian, or assigning children to a children’s home or boarding school are performed by departments of public education for minors and by departments of public health for incapable persons. The immediate duties of guardianship are carried out by the guardian appointed by these agencies. Guardians are the legal representatives of their wards and undertake legal actions on their behalf and in their name.

Only a citizen who has reached the age of 18 and has voluntarily assumed the responsibilities of guardianship may be a guardian. These responsibilities cannot be assigned to persons who have been deprived of parental rights or to those recognized by a court to be either incapable or of limited capability. A guardian may be relieved of his duties in certain legally recognized instances, as when children return to their parents or are adopted, or when incapable adults are placed in state institutions. A guardian may also be relieved at his own request if there are valid reasons. A guardian may be removed if the duties of guardianship have been performed improperly. If the guardianship has been used for personal gain and if the ward has been left unsupervised and without essential care, the guardian may be criminally liable. When a ward reaches 15 years of age, the guardianship ceases, and in the absence of a special decision, the guardian becomes a curator. Where an adult ward regains health, guardianship ceases upon a court decision.

Protection of the property of those recognized through established legal procedure as missing persons, as affirmed in a court decision, is another aim of guardianship. A guardian is also appointed for property, such as a residence, that requires management prior to its transfer to heirs. In cases where there are no notarial offices the guardian is appointed by the executive committee of the local soviet.



in the USSR, a form of legal protection of the personal and property rights and interests of citizens.

Guardianship has two purposes. The first is the bringing up of minors between the ages of 15 and 18. A guardian is named in cases where the adolescent does not have parents, in cases where the parents have been deprived of their parental rights, and in all other cases where the adolescent is left for any reason without parental care. The guardian must live with the ward and look after the ward’s physical health, education, and preparation for socially useful activity. The guardian must also defend the ward’s rights and interests. In certain cases, wardship and guardianship agencies may authorize separate residences for guardian and ward if this will not interfere with the ward’s education or with the protection of the ward’s rights and interests.

The second purpose of guardianship is the protection of the rights and interests of a legally capable adult who cannot do so independently for reasons of health. Guardians see that the ward enjoys adequate living conditions, care, and treatment. They assist the ward in the exercise of rights and the performance of duties, and they protect the ward against ill-treatment by third parties.

Guardianship is established in the same manner as wardship. A special system of guardianship is provided for persons whose legal capability is restricted by a court owing to the person’s abuse of alcohol or narcotics. The ward may receive and dispose of wages, a pension, and other payments only with the consent of the guardian, whose permission is also required before the ward may dispose of any other property. Guardianship may be revoked by wardship and guardianship agencies after a court decision to restrict legal capability has been canceled.


See also Protectiveness.
hundred-eyed giant guarding Io. [Gk. Myth.: Leach, 72]
Argus Panoptes
all-seeing herdsman with one hundred eyes. [Gk. Myth.: Walsh Classical, 29]
battle ax
symbol of wardship. [Western Folklore: Jobes, 163]
popular name for a Yeoman of the Guard or Yeoman Warder of the Tower of London. [Br. Hist.: Payton, 88]
enlightened one deferring Nirvana to help others. [Buddhism: Parrinder, 48]
protects children from witches. [Rom. Myth.: Leach, 191]
three-headed dog, guards gate to Hades. [Gk. Myth.: Zimmerman, 55]
defended tree of life with flaming swords. [O.T.: Genesis 3:24]
watchful church-tower sitter. [Christian Symbolism: Appleton, 21]
protector of cities and mother-goddess. [Phrygian Myth.: Avery, 345]
half-woman, half-beast; guarded Zeus while imprisoned by Typhon. [Gk. Myth.: Howe, 78]
giant who watched over Thor’s goats. [Norse Myth.: LLEI, I: 327]
stood vigil over golden apples of Hesperides. [Gk. Myth.: LLEI, I: 327]
castrated guardian of Eastern harems. [Arab. Culture: Jobes, I, 530–531]
dragon guarding the Nibelung’s gold. [Ger. Opera: Wagner, Siegfried, Westerman, 240–241]
fairy godmother
mythical being who guards children from danger and rewards them for good deeds. [Folklore: Misc.]
Faithful Eckhardt
old man; warns people of death procession on Maundy Thursday. [Ger. Folklore: LLEI, I: 281]
tutelary angels. [Persian Myth.: LLEI, I: 328]
fiery swords
brandished by cherubim safeguarding tree of life. [O.T.: Genesis 3:24]
Fisher King
guardian of the Grail. [Ger. Legend, Parzival; Arthurian Legend: Walsh Classical, 227]
guardian spirit assigned to each human for life. [Norse Myth.: LLEI, I: 328]
ferocious watchdog at gate of Hell. [Norse Myth.: LLEI, I: 328]
guardian angel
term for Christian namesake who watches over a young child. [Christianity: Misc.]
guardian of Bifrost; distinguished for acute vision and hearing. [Norse Myth.: Leach, 488]
hundred-headed dragon; guarded apples of the Hesperides. [Rom. Myth.: Zimmerman, 145]
sleeps with eyes open. [Christian Symbolism: Appleton, 59]
Mahub Ali
horse-dealer in charge of Kim. [Br. Lit.: Kim]
gentle old dog; guards the Darling children. [Br. Lit.: Peter Pan]
Palace Guard, the
sobriquet for the zealous spokesmen-defenders of the Nixon Administration. [Am. Hist.: The Palace Guard]
a “safeguard”; Troy believed safe while statue of Pallas Athene remained. [Gk. Lit.: Iliad; Espy, 40]
guardian of the dead. [Christian Folklore: Mercatante, 159]
Swiss Guards
papal praetorian guard instituted by Julius II. [Ital. Hist.: Plumb, 218, 254]
protector of treasure and wealth. [Heraldry: Halberts, 40]
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IN A significant verdict which will have far- reaching implications,the Supreme Court on Monday ruled that an unwed mother can be given sole guardianship of her child without the consent of the father.