Crimes Ordeals Constabulary amp Courts in the late

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Crimes Ordeals Constabulary amp Courts in the late Medieval amp early Renaissance periods This summary aims to better detail compare and contrast an oft overlooked aspect of medieval novels films and role playing games the laws of the land forces of order and courts of justice


Misdemeanours Comprised every species of crime which occasioned at common law the violation of lands or goods. Crime Definition Ordeal Remarks, The act of remaining in a particular public place for a protracted time without any apparent lawful Fined or Stocks While petty this crime is very subjective and so a. purpose An occupational risk commonly accepted by most Footpads Pilloried Incarceration charge easily levelled against undesirables PCs. Malicious The wanton or reckless damage defacement or destruction of property aka breaking up his walls or Stocks Fined The penalties delivered depended on the severity. mischief doors Those who pillaged and plundered More commonly known today as Vandalism Pilloried of the damage inflicted on the victim. Being a common Being out in the streets at night 9pm until sunrise without legitimate business Considered an Stocks Fined Night watchmen patrolled the streets and were. nightwalker occupational risk by many a Bawd and feared by most Pilloried expected to examine all suspicious characters. An oral form of defamation consisting of false statements about a person which would damage that Fined Branked Calling a person a fox incurred a stiff fine While. person s reputation An occupational risk commonly accepted by many an Agitator and Demagogue Pilloried calling someone a harlot incurred a fair fine. Starting a fight that left the victim bloodied but not grievously wounded see Battery This was an Fined or Stocks The mark of F signified Fraymaker Where. Affray occupational risk for all Bodyguards but commonly accepted by most Moreover any convictions Pilloried Branding slightly bloodied describes heavily wounded 2 3W. were seen by most as practically a badge of honour with F badly bloodied equals severely wounded 0 1W. Pilloried Branding, Petty larceny Stealing items less than 12 pence a shilling e g a loaf of bread a bird s egg an apple etc The mark of T signified Thief. Act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence to a deity Essentially it is a form of verbal Fined Penance. Blasphemy The mark of B signified Blasphemer, sacrilege e g swearing without legitimate justification i e taking a god s name in vain Branding with a B. Attitudes vary considerably from one province to another from banned whores to tolerated Pilloried Branding P signified Prostitute Repeat offenders risked a. Prostitution, strumpets and even licensed ladies of negotiable virtue in the more progressive counties with a P Impaling slow and painful death via the Judas Cradle. Fornication The practices of sex outside of marriage Pilloried Penance Repeat offenders risked castration. Those vagabonds idle and suspect persons living suspiciously i e a person who has no land no Beggars who are old and incapable of working. Stocks Pilloried, Vagrancy master and no legitimate trade or source of income so who wanders from place to place often in receive a beggar s licence i e anyone else caught.
Branding Conscripted, poverty Probably the greatest fear for most Beggars begging was convicted of being a vagrant. The malicious defamation of any person in print writing signs or pictures designed to expose that Fined Ears nailed to Traditionally rare but increasingly common with. person to public hatred or to provoke wrath in the victim A regular risk for Agitators Demagogues Pilloried Cropping the rise of the printing press cheap pamphlets. Fined Stocks, Conductus The felon has bought been given or acquired stolen goods Historical equivalent of receiving stolen goods. The illegal hunting within royal parks Usually undertaken by impoverished peasants for subsistence Fined Cropping Rarely poachers risked being sewn into a deerskin. purposes i e to supplement their meagre diets Often their prey was hare or rabbit Blinding and then hunted down by ferocious dogs. Incarceration in a debtor s jail which was often a single large cell until their families paid their debt Debt prisoners often died of diseases contracted. The failure to from other debt prisoners Conditions included starvation and abuse from other prisoners If the father of a family was imprisoned for debt the family. Debt evasion Incarceration, repay a debt business often suffered while the mother and children fell into poverty Unable to pay the debt the father often remained in debtors prison for many. years Some debt prisoners were released to become serfs or indentured servants debt bondage until they paid off their debt in labour. Starting a fight that left the victim grievously wounded Simply threatening to harm a victim is Fined Pilloried. Battery Grievously wounded 0 Wounds or less a critical. considered to be Assault see Trespasses Practically a badge of honour for many Bodyguards Incarceration. Trespass Entering a property without the owner s consent Fined Incarceration If unable to pay the fine then incarceration longer. Performing a duty negligently Negligently wounding a horse or Negligently supplying rotten A dozen lashes Justice delivered in front of the. Negligence Fair Flogging, victuals troops to install discipline and boost morale. Gross Magical Any serious or repeated infringement of the Articles of Magic or his Order s own constitution e g Fair Flogging Considered to be a form of minor malpractice. Misconduct reckless spellcraft unsanctioned spellcraft resale of spell ingredients aetherial negligence etc Banishment Although harsh it was preferable to Pacification. Obtaining money property or services from a person entity or institution through coercion Usually a Also known as blackmail or protection racket. Fined Restitution, Extortion tribute is paid in return for immunity from raids and other harassment An occupational risk Restitution is a form of financial compensation.
Incarceration Hanging, commonly accepted by every Racketeer that is paid by the convict to their victim. The illicit removal of corpses from graves or morgues constituted a violation of consecrated ground Fined Incarceration Also known as sepuchrum violatum in Classical or. Desecration, and thus was a physical sacrilege Such Grave Robbers were also known as resurrectionists Hanging more commonly known as Body Snatching. Incarceration This crime was usually committed for ransom or. The unlawful taking away or transportation of a man against that person s will usually to hold the. Abduction Restitution in furtherance of another crime Also known as. person unlawfully by persuasion by fraud or by open force or violence. Banishment Hanging kidnapping, Felonies A crime that is characterised by offences against the person. Crime Definition Ordeal Remarks, A momentary lapse or accidental violation of divine principles by a priest of that faith e g a Verenan Minor penances included menial duties fasting. Minor Minor Penance Great, priest s failure to speak whole the truth stop injustice or prevent the obliteration of knowledge or an vows of silence short pilgrimages donation of.
transgression Penance, Ulrican priest s failure to help a fallen comrade suffer a defeat lose their blade slay a dog etc alms and even mortification wearing hair shirt. Incarceration The difference between restitution and a fine is. Sexual violation of a victim known today as rape It also includes attempted rape as little distinction. Ravishment Restitution Castration that restitution is paid to the victim whereas fines. was made during this period This is a surprisingly moderate offence compared to modern values. Burning are paid to the state,2 dozen lashes Justice delivered in front of the. The act of a soldier wilfully disobeying his superior If a military officer were to disobey the lawful Stout Flogging troops to install discipline and boost morale This. Insubordination, orders of his or her civilian superiors this would also count Hanging was based on the idea being that soldiers should. fear their officers more than they fear the enemy, The theft of items valued at more than 1 shilling Since most purses contained several pieces of silver The mark of T signified Thief The crime was. Branding with T, most Cut Purses Pickpockets were charged with this crime Due to their looting of valuables Tomb also known as Grand theft To avoid this.
Grand larceny Mutilation hand cut off, Robbers known as Night Hawks were equally liable but they were also often charged with Trespass charge Grave Robbers were often careful not to. Finally though Embezzlers were also liable for this crime their guilt was often much harder to prove steal anything such as jewellery or clothes. The mark of T signified Thief In the severest of, The theft of domesticated animals where Sheep were the most common Cattle more valuable and Pilloried Branding. Livestock theft cases the felon s left cheek was branded with H. Horses the most prized with T Galley slave,and his right with T to signify Horse Thief. Breaking and entering the house of another in the night time hour after sunset hour before Mutilation hand cut off. Burglary A practice also known as Rustling or Duffing. sunrise with intent to commit a felony therein Hanging. The illegal transportation of objects information or people When calculating fines Excisemen would While often non violent this crime was classed a. Fined Hard Labour, Smuggling consider the following maxim to pay an amount of money equal to four times the value of the goods felony as state coffers grew ever more dependent. Fined Incarceration, themselves on tariffs high rates of duty varied from 20 60.
The intentional act of swearing a false oath or of falsifying an affirmation to tell the truth whether Mutilation hand cut off Oaths would be sworn on relics religious. spoken or in writing concerning matters material to an official proceeding Penance Hanging artefacts Also known as forswearing. Aiding and Occasionally animals thought to be familiars were. Those who are party to a crime i e those helping criminals Incarceration. abetting charged with this crime, Harbouring an The providing of shelter for those on the run from the long arm of the law Only exceptions were Incarceration lasted until those they receive is. Incarceration further, outlaw fugitive churches monasteries that had the privilege of sheltering fugitives in sanctuary for 42 days but captured at which they are liable to same penalty. serf or criminal thereafter as fugitive, An unlawful killing without premeditation or malice These occurred in the course of fights or during Fined Fined. Manslaughter The mark of M signified Manslaughterer This. legitimate activities e g physically disciplining one s wife or servant or plying one s trade Bodyguard Branding with M. Death by crime was charged far more commonly that of. Coachman Labourer etc It was also the charge brought against duellists but any suspicions of foul Incarceration. misadventure Murder, play and or vengeful families were often sufficient for the judge to raise the charge to murder 6 12 months. The practice of spying on people engaged in intimate behaviours such as undressing sexual activity Blinded Mutilation. Voyeurism Voyeurs were also known as a Peeping Tom. or other actions usually considered to be of a private nature both eyes put out. Severe Flogging 3 dozen lashes Justice delivered in front of the. Any soldier man of arms or archer which having mustered departeth from his captain within his. Desertion Branding with D troops to install discipline and boost morale The. term without repaying the King s wages,Transportation mark of D signified Deserter.
Defaming the Magisters were so terrified of Pacification that. Any Imperial Magisters that has brought the reputation of the Colleges and his Order into disrepute Pacification. Good Orders of some were known to hand themselves over to. through fault of his behaviour utterances or spellcraft i e gross malpractice Banishment. the Colleges Witch Hunters claiming to be unsanctioned mage. Great penances included public confessions long, A deliberate and or repeated violation of divine principles by a priest of that faith e g a Verenan Great Penance pilgrimages recovery of relics temporary. priest s perjury attempt to perverse the course of justice condoning injustice or an Ulrican priest s use Defrocking demotions becoming a templar self flagellation. transgression, of a firearm fleeing combat abandoning comrades allowing the Eternal Flame to extinguish etc Excommunication where most stop at first blood 3W but many. flagellants go much further each critical 1IP, Execution could be avoided by petitioning for a royal pardon but these remained rare with scarcely a hundred issued per year. Capital Offences, Plaintiffs were more likely to have their capital sentence commuted to a more clement Ordeal e g Immurement. Crime Definition Ordeal Remarks, Dereliction of The failure to attend court ignoring a summons flight from arrest when charged with a crime.
Outlawry Bounty Inevitably felons were convicted in absentia. duties custody or jumping bail More commonly known as Fleeing justice. Forgery The fraudulent making or altering of a written document to the detriment of another man s right Mutilation Hanging Deeds writs seals warrants promissory notes. Premeditated deliberate killing Many people tried for this offence notably duellists were convicted of Women convicted of murder were strangled and. Murder Wergild Hanging, the lesser offence of manslaughter An occupational hazard for most Footpads and every Assassin then burnt. Resisting arrest The threatening struggling against or striking a keeper of the peace while being arrested Hanging Making it lawful to destroy felons who resist. A criminal conspiracy among soldiers or sailors to openly oppose change or overthrow their superior Justice delivered in front of the troops to install. Mutiny Hanging,officer s discipline and boost morale. More recently mothers across the Old World,prefer to abandon their unwanted children at the. Deliberately killing one s own new born child Most cases infanticide involved unmarried mothers The Repeated. Infanticide door of a temple in the hope that the clergy will. mother was presumed guilty unless she could prove that the baby was born dead Ducking. care for their upbringing Shallyans seem the most,popular and have founded the first orphanages. posthumously Often carried in despair sometimes due to a. The act of intentionally taking one s own life or who laid violent hands upon themselves and proven. Suicide Excommunicated mental disorder alcoholism and or stress factors. to be of sound mind at the time of death, denied a proper burial such as debt hostile relationships and bullying.
Traditionally many provinces particularly,Ulrican ones maintained double standards. Adultery A couple engaged in sexual intercourse outside of their respective marriages Buried alive. regarding male and female adultery with the,latter being considered a more serious violation. Considered to be violent taking of any money or goods from the person of another putting him in fear Highway robbery occurred when a robber often. Robbery be the value thereof above or under 1 shilling The gravest occupational risk for every Footpad and a Gibbeting on horseback stole from a traveller i e the victim. charge feared greatly by most was outside town city walls and so on a highway. Privateering uses similar methods but the captain,acts under orders of the state authorizing the. Robbery or criminal violence on the high seas The gravest occupational risk for every Pirate and greatly. Piracy Gibbeting capture of merchant ships belonging to an enemy. feared by most,nation Letter of Marque making it a legitimate. form of war like activity by non state actors, Although this remains a stereotype in certain rural.
Incest The sexual activity between family members or close relatives Impaling communities nobles are equally if not guiltier of. such practices, Sodomy Buggery of humans or beasts Dismemberment Oddly popular among certain rural folk clergy. Counterfeiting The fraudulent minting of coins including the possession moulds and the clipping of coins Boiling Kislevites pour molten lead down their throats. Heresy Opinion of doctrine at variance with the orthodox or accepted doctrine of a church or religious system Torture Burning Usually reserved for members of the clergy. Often the convict was condemned inside a replica, Arson The malicious and wilful burning of a house or outhouse of another man Burning. of the building they were accused of burning, Traitorous Any Imperial Magister who becomes a threat to the Emperor or the Empire at large i e used to Pacification As one of the broadest of aetherial laws this is. Aetherial Acts prosecute Magisters whose Magick remains pure but whose loyalties have become poisoned Decapitation often brandished but rarely charged. Chaos Worship Anyone caught worshiping proscribed cults Dark Gods or consorting with mutants Torture Burning The commonest crime for most Witch Hunters. An intention to bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the person of His Imperial This was the gravest form of Inciting riotous. Sedition Breaking wheel, Majesty his heirs or successors Considered the ultimate risk by every Agitator and Demagogue behaviour. Sorcery Imperial Magisters who rejected their Order embraced the Dark Arts Necromancy Daemonology Pacification Burning These renegades were known as Black Magisters. Witchcraft Any person practicing spellcraft outside of the Colleges of Magic and their Orders i e without a licence Burning Warlocks often learnt sorcery by books of power. High treason Plotting against the monarchy or state whereas petty treason is treason against a lawful superior Drawing quartering An everyday risk for many a Spy. Bounties were set according to the gravity crime 1 5 GC for misdemeanours 10 50 GC for felonies 50 500 GC for capital offences. Ordeal Description, A small but dedicated building that was used for the temporary usually overnight detention of unruly often drunk people in rural parts The lock up was frequently built of stone.
Village lock up, with a single door and a narrow slit window Usually the lock up s door is sturdy T5 3D6W but the lock is often simple lock rating of D4x10. Drunkard s Criminal is required to wear a barrel holes were cut into the sides for the person s hands and head causing it to become like a heavy awkward shirt as he was led through the town. Cloak so villagers might jeer at him and maybe pelt him with rotten vegetables eggs fruit mud excrement stones or dead rats cats etc. A device which partially immobilises the criminal by clamping his feet with large hinged wooden boards Not only is this physically painful minor improvised missile D2 1 damage. Stocks but it also offers a form of social humiliation often setup at marketplaces or crossroads and even entertainment to the public who often took the opportunity to pelt the criminal with. rotten eggs fruit excrement stones or dead rats cats i e pass WP test every few hours or gain 1 Insanity Point Detention lasted from a few hours to a couple of days 3D10 hours. Fined The criminal must pay a fine or face being Pilloried and or be Incarcerated. Petty fine 3 8 shillings for petty trespasses If the criminal could not or would not pay he spent a night in the stocks. Fair fine 12 30 shillings for gross or repeated trespasses and petty misdemeanours e g loitering night stalker affray or half a dozen lashes see Flogging. Stiff fine 2 5 GC for gross misdemeanour e g petty larceny battery blasphemy poaching or a dozen lashes see Flogging. Heavy fine 8 20 GC for repeated misdemeanours or petty felonies e g battery ravishment grand larceny or 2 dozen lashes see Flogging. Massive fine 25 100 GC for gross felony e g burglary smuggling murder of a slave or serf or 3 dozen lashes see Flogging. Wergild The criminal is condemned to compensate the owner by paying a heavy fine if the victim was a slave and a massive fine if the victim was a serf Wergild is Norscan term for blood money. A device mounted on a post that partially immobilises the criminal by clamping his hands and head with large hinged wooden boards The victim s back was then flogged before. allowing the public a few hours to mock taunt abuse the criminal Trespasses got a half dozen lashes each lash inflicts 0 5 W to the back repeat offenders got a fair flogging or a. dozen lashes misdemeanours got a stout flogging of 2 dozen lashes death possible felonies got a severe flogging or 3 dozen lashes death likely Don t forget 1 IP per critical. Branked The offender usually a woman had a cage like contraption placed on her head for several D10 hours A metal strip on the brank fitted into the mouth and was either sharpened to. Scold s bridle a point or covered with spikes so that any movement of the tongue was certain to cause severe injuries to the mouth pass WP test every hour or suffer D2W to head. The removal of a criminal s ear with a blade 1 critical to the head It was also a secondary punishment to have the criminals ears nailed to the pillory with the intention that their. body movements would tear them off In 1538 Thomas Barrie he spent a whole day with his ears nailed to the pillory in Newbury England before having them cut off to release him. Penance A ritualised repentance to atone for one s sins e g pilgrimage vow of silence join templars etc where the greater the sin the heavier the penance pass WP test or gain D2 2D3 IPs. The marking by burning his skin with a red hot iron which combines extreme pain Str 3 2D4 W with mental anguish pass WP test or gain D3 IPs and public humiliation Usually. the breast was branded but sometimes under the left armpit or even the forehead Any visible disfigurement results in a loss of 2D10 Fellowship as well as a constant stigma. A chair was attached to a large lever which stabilised the seat so that it would remain upright with the offender strapped in The chair was then lowered into the water and submerged. Ducking any number of times T test each round to hold breath see Suffocation rules plus WP test or gain 1 IP Occasionally the criminal was tied up and pushed into a river where if they. were washed up alive the offender would be exiled Rare still they could be sewn into a sack with live animals e g cats 2 A Str 1 dogs 2 A Str 2 snakes rats 2D6 A Str 1. Condemned to several 2D6 months of forced work quarrying Middenheim Mining Colony Penitentiary building roads chain gangs city walls or labouring on the docks as. Hard Labour, grinders men walking inside a crane Each month the toil and malnutrition destroys the victim s body test Toughness or lose 1 to all characteristics and soul WP test or gain 1 IP. Incarceration Imprisoned for a term befitting the crime i e often 1 10 years but sometimes life Every couple of months test Toughness or lose 1 to all characteristics and test WP or gain D2 IP. An appendage is cut from the criminal ranging from a finger 1 critical to a hand or foot 3 critical depending on severity and nature of the crime pass WP test or gain 2D3 IPs. Mutilation, Note that amputation was such a common punishment that people who had accidentally lost body parts would carry certified notes to assure people that they were not criminals. This often involved the total removal of all the male genitalia This incurred great danger of death due to bleeding or infection 4 critical to the body and in some states was seen as. Castration, the same as a death sentence Removal of only the testicles had much less risk 1 critical to the body. Defrocking The removal of a priest s right to exercise their ordained duties due to criminal convictions disciplinary problems or doctrinal disagreements It becomes Laicisation when the priest. Laicisation requests his removal for personal reasons e g running for civil office taking over a family business declining health or old age desire to marry or an unresolved dispute. Banishment The criminal is banished from the city province with orders never to return upon fear of death This ordeal was only served to local residents i e re roll for vagrants and travellers. Pacification A sort of Aethyric gelding i e cutting away part of the soul capable of seeing casting magic lose D6 Magic Points pass WP test or gain D6 IP It can be repeated if required. In times of war this constituted service in the Imperial army in a penal battalion These were mainly comprised of convicts but also soldiers with serious disciplinary problems. Conscription Although service was limited to 3 months few survive that long due to meagre equipment paltry rations ruthless objectives and reckless leadership During times of peace conscripts. were instead required to provide labour for other activities of the state see Hard Labour. Transportation To a penal colony either in the Southlands Leopoldheim or Sudenberg or Lustria Skeggi or Port Reaver Malnutrition guaranteed fleas likely and tropical diseases a real possibility. Excommunication An institutional act of religious censure used to deprive or suspend membership in a cult to restrict certain rights within it e g the receipt of blessings and the recital of prayers. The accused is declared an outlaw The Writ of Outlawry made the pronouncement Caput gerat lupinum Let his be a wolf s head or literally May he bear a wolfish head. Outlaws were banished and forfeited all their legal rights i e anyone could freely steal their property and could even kill them In extreme cases a bounty 10 500 GCs was added. A form of incarceration usually for life in which a person is for example locked within an enclosed space and all possible exits turned into impassable walls This includes instances. Immurement, where people have been enclosed in extremely tight confinement such as within a coffin Few survive past 3 days and those that do are usually driven mad.
The criminal is executed in the nearest public square to the delight of the locals A Fate Point may be used to evade death but not without adverse consequences for the. condemned e g becomes an outlaw gains a sworn enemy indebted to liberators loss of prized possessions and or wealth etc. Penalty Description, The criminal s head is chopped off at the neck This was the quickest form of execution victim often died in seconds rather than minutes hours or even days and so it was seen as the. Decapitation most honourable Thus it was reserved for the nobility and gentry Nobles were beheaded with a zweihander 2 h sword and gentry with a bardiche 2 h axe Nonetheless the. condemned often paid the headsman a gold crown to ensure his blade was sharp and his strike true For in certain cases it took the headsman 10 blows to sever the victim s neck. Hanging The criminal was hanged by the neck till he be dead then cut down and buried contrary to Gibbeting where the corpse would rot for weeks for all to see. The criminal was hung alive in a metal cage roped by the neck and left to die of thirst usually takes 3 days. Worse ordeal by using a chain instead of a rope chain does not tighten. Gibbeting Extra punishment by burning a small pile of wood under the victim. Corpse left dangling for weeks till it rotted and as a warning to others. As the body was not buried the criminal s soul was considered restless and so gibbets were often said to be haunted by ghosts of the condemned. A form of incarceration usually for life in which a person is for example locked within an enclosed space and all possible exits turned into impassable walls This includes instances. Immurement, where people have been enclosed in extremely tight confinement such as within a coffin The prisoner is simply left to die from starvation 46 73 days or dehydration 40 6D6 hours. This was performed with either a red hot poker or a large stake being thrust through the rectum sometimes coming out the criminal s mouth Death would take several minutes even. hours It was customary to leave them on public display Equally the criminal could be lowered onto the Judas Cradle which was a tall thin stool topped with a large pyramidal spike. Burning The condemned is bound to a large wooden stake atop a huge wood pile The agonising pain lasted minute or two before the victim was asphyxiated by the smoke. Boiling The condemned was placed in a large cauldron and literally boiled alive in either water or oil The pain was excruciating and could last several 1 D4 minutes. The two adulterers would be tied together, Buried alive Hole in the earth is layered with thorny bushes. After the hole is closed a stake would be driven in the earth and subsequently through the two adulterers the victims usually died of asphyxiation within a few minutes. Dismemberment The condemned had his four limbs tied to four horses and then the horses were made to run in four different directions resulting in the person being pulled apart. A torture device used for public execution by breaking the condemned s bones and then bludgeoning him to death Rather than dying in minutes the condemned agonised for hours. Breaking wheel, or even days Thus this form execution was reserved for the most heinous of crimes and its spectacular nature ensured that it was among the most popular with crowds. Hanged till half dead dragged face downward through the streets by a horse s tail drawn disembowelled quartered cut into 4 pieces then buried in different parts of town. 1 Burning with red hot pliers,Trial by Combat Judicial Duel Wager of Battle.
Drawing 2 Peeling off the skin in strips, Basis a legal procedure for settling accusations in the absence of witnesses or a confession. quartering 3 Painting hot tar on the soles of the feet. Eligible crimes Insult Battery Larceny Abduction Ravishment Manslaughter and Fraud Forgery. 4 Quartering or sometimes pulling out the guts, Conditions the election of arms gauntlets cudgel sword mace rapier flail zweihander and armour. 5 Hanging of the four pieces at the gallows, leathers shield buckler net main gauche was dictated by the nature and severity of the crime. Exceptions a Wager of Battle cannot be invoked, WFRP City Middenheim page 22 24 The Long Arm of the Law o If the defendant was taken in the mainour in the act of committing his crime. Sigmar s Heirs Chapter 6 Law Justice Criminals o If the defendant attempted to escape from prison. WFRP Companion Chapter 6 Advanced Trial Rules o If the evidence against the defendant is so strong that there could be no effective denial of guilt. Realms of Sorcery pages 69 70 The Penalty of the Law o If the plaintiff is a woman above 60 years of age a minor or if he is lame blind in such cases the. Marienburg Sold Down the River plaintiff can decline the challenge and the case will be determined by a jury. http www tomecek com jay CrimeandPunishment html o Priests nobles and citizens of Nuln can also decline the battle if challenged. http home arcor de mustangace sca class punishment htm Process the two parties in dispute fight in single combat the winner of the fight is proclaimed to be right. http www livescience com 927 medieval justice medieval html o A gentry clergy or noble defendant is allowed to hire a Judicial Champion to fight on his behalf. http www historylearningsite co uk medieval law and order htm o The duel takes place in a judicial list 60 feet square before noon and concluded before sunset. http www eyewitnesstohistory com punishment htm o Both contestants take oaths against Witchcraft Sorcery with possessions searched for enchantments. http www englandsmedievalfestival com medieval Visitors info history crimes and punishments html o A herald reads the accusation out loud and the defendant is granted a last chance to confess If the. http www buzzle com articles crime and punishment in the middle ages html latter did not do so the duel begins. https www oldbaileyonline org static Crimes jsp o If the defendant is defeated but still alive either by crying the word Craven I am vanquished. BBC News A ghoulish tour of medieval punishments being incapacitated or knocked unconscious he is then hanged on the spot. o If the defendant defeats the plaintiff or fends him off from sunrise to sunset he can go free. o If the plaintiff cries Craven he is liable for damages to his victor punished with Outlawry. o If the defendant fails to appear after being summoned three times the plaintiff can execute two cuts. and two stabs against the wind and his matter is treated as if he had won the fight. The Bill The Constabulary of the Old World, Every settlement in the Old World from the smallest village to the largest town maintains some form of law enforcement For not only are watchmen are responsible for maintaining law and order but they.
are also empowered to make arrests In times of need they even double as fire fighters Here are a few points of interest. Each watch lasts 12 hours from dawn to dusk and vice versa. Each watchman is usually acquitted with a hand weapon a sidearm and some form of armour see below. In town and cities the watch is grouped into patrols of about 6 men i e patrol size 1D4 3 and 1D4 5 at night. Patrols are led by a Constable Watch Serjeant who is more experienced and better equipped see below. Lawman Armour Weapon Sidearm At night, Watchman Jerkin Cap Unrimmed shield Club Dagger Lantern on a pole. Constable Hauberk Kettle hat Round shield Arming sword Dagger Lantern Bell. Historically a well run medieval city maintained 1 law officer guardsman watchman etc for every 150 citizens Slack. cities will have half this number A few rare cities will have more To put this in perspective here is a comparative table. Settlement Population Hides1 Tithing2 Hundreds Shire Watchman Constable Reeve Sheriff. Village 100 27 3 0 0 1 0 0,Town 1 000 269 27 3 0 7 2 0. City 10 000 2 688 269 27 3 67 22 3,Capital 100 000 26 882 2 688 269 27 667 222 32. For example Altdorf s population is apparently 105 000 citizens. So if we apply the rule described above this suggests that Altdorf boasts about 700 watchmen. Given that the city has 21 bezirk districts and 3 huge gates this would suggest 24 watch stations. If there are 700 watchmen distributed among 24 watch stations this suggests about 29 per watch station. Given that each watch lasts 12 hours this suggest about 15 watchmen on duty per watch. This implies 1 patrol would guard the watch station while 2 patrols are out on the beat in that bezirk. Finally given that most watchmen are only paid 8 per day and constables only 10 for an occupation which leaves. them open to constant abuse daily threats occasional injury and possible maiming or death it is hardly surprising that. many watchmen are on the take i e they occasionally supplement their income by accepting bribes from concerned. citizens And when such leniency slides into excess locals often start to refer to their greedy watchmen as pigs. Here are some of the most common requests,Bribe3 Indulgence. 2 12 shillings Overlook a trespass summary offence. 1 5 GCs Reveal information on a victim or prisoner. 6 24 GCs Overlook a misdemeanour Improve a prisoner s conditions for a week. 25 40 GCs Grant access to prisoner Improve a prisoner s conditions for a fortnight. 50 90 GCs Abet the escape of a prisoner convicted of a misdemeanour. 100 GCs Abet the escape of a felon criminal convicted of a felony. 1 A hide is an area containing enough farmable land to support 1 cavalier This is usually interpreted to be a typical family The average size of a medieval family is commonly estimated to be 3 72. 2 A sort of neighbourhood watch which is governed by a system of collective responsibility called frankpledge. 3 Size is based on the bribery guidelines outlined in page 67 of the WFRP1 rulebook. The Courts of the Old World, Once a suspect has been arrested he will be incarcerated until judged by the relevant court The only exceptions to this rule are summary offences which are proceeded against summarily by a local judge.
Court name Court type Jurisdiction Remarks, Held at various intervals during the year and all villagers had to attend or pay a fine All men were placed in groups of ten called. a tithing Each tithing had to ensure that no member of their group broke the law If a member of a tithing broke a law then the. Civil Misdemeanours Felonies other members had to make sure that he went to court The Lord s steward was in charge of the court A jury of twelve men was. Commoners petty crimes chosen by the villagers The jury had to collect evidence and decide whether the accused was guilty or not guilty and if found. guilty what the punishment should Presided by a high ranking local priest Old World equivalent of a bishop and the sheriff. the Reeve of that Shire exercising both ecclesiastical and civil jurisdiction All Capital Offences are referred to the County Court. The majority of legal cases are presided over by a tribunal of three magistrates though there are cases of misdemeanour where. County one magistrate is often enough to render judgement In circumstances where the proper jurisdiction is in question in other parts. Civil Misdemeanours Felonies, Provincial of the province the court case will be referred to the County Court Imperial justice is said to be final and only in extreme. Commoners Capital Offences, Court situations will an appeal of a ruling from this courthouse be accepted by the Imperial Courts As with the Imperial Courts many. a criminal found guilty will end their days in either one of the Empire s prisons or at the business end of a gallows. The court here is usually the site for cases involving the Nobility where the accused is judged by a jury of their noble peers. Kaiserlicher, Should a noble be convicted of a capital offence they may appeal for Trial by Combat In such cases the noble may attempt to. Gerichshof, Civil Misdemeanours Felonies defend their honour by force of arms Due to increasing use of Judicial Champions this right is increasingly refused in favour of.
Nobility Capital Offences Decapitation which is considered to be the only honourable form of execution On rare occasions especially fair ladies this might. be commuted to banishment Trials that concern commoners and their petty grievances against a noble are first tried at the. County Court see above where many are dismissed for lack of proper evidence. Court Watchmen are judged by the Sheriff in his capacity as Captain of the Watch Soldiers are equally judged by their Captains. Negligence, Martial Likewise sailors are judged by their Sea Captains All officers are judged by their Commander or Admiral and are entitled to the. Military Insubordination Desertion, Military right of Trial by Combat Trials are either held in the barracks or admiralty of the accused or aboard ship when distances do not. tribunal allow this In all cases even if acquitted the stain of dishonour is likely to ruin their military career. While Witch Hunters often try to investigate and arrest Magisters for infringing the Articles of Magic it is the sole responsibility. Gross Magical Misconduct of the Colleges of Magic However the exact make up and process of the judgement is open to wild speculation particularly. College of Traitorous Aetherial Acts among apprentices and young Magisters for it is shrouded in secrecy and legend Indeed since their establishment 2 centuries. Magic Defaming the Good Orders ago the Colleges have condemned only 6 Magisters to Pacification Finally all Magisters are considered liable for the behaviour. of the Colleges of Magic of their apprentices past and present So if a Magister strays from the path their old mentor if alive will also be examined and. punished with anything from exile to execution for his former prot g s crimes unless an explanation can be given. The accused are tried by a jury of catechists the majority of which are Sigmarites So while the Star Chamber is technically. Star Blasphemy Heresy, Ecclesiastic headed by the Supreme Law Lord the Emperor s Counsel on Legal Affairs and traditionally a Verenan justice in these courts is. Chamber Witchcraft, more influenced by Sigmarite dogma than Verenan enlightenment. Saved by books and clergy, First time offenders of felonies who could read Read Write could petition for the benefits of clergy whereby they could receive the lesser punishment of branding instead of execution However this.
disposition was reserved exclusively to men i e women who could read did not hope for similar clemency. Thieves that are saved by their books and clergy for the first offence if they have stolen nothing else but oxen sheep money or such like which be no open robberies as by the highway side. or assailing of any man s house in the night without putting him in fear of his life or breaking up his walls or doors are burned in the left hand upon the brawn of the thumb with a hot iron so that. if they be apprehended again that mark betrayeth them to have been arraigned of felony before whereby they are sure at that time to have no mercy.

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