Anglo Saxon- Crime, punishment, law enforcement and attitudes in society.



Crime against the person: murder, assault, public disorder, ****.

Crime against property: arson, theft (such as stealing crops or poaching), counterfeiting coins.

Crimes against authority: treason, rebellion.

Crime was mainly petty theft, vandalism and violence was rare.


Wergild: fines were paid to the victim or the victims family based on what the crime was. It was compensation and was used for many fines including murder. The wergild depended on social status.

Mutilation: a form of corporal punishment, limbs were removed depending on the crime. For example, if you committed murder you could have your arm removed. 

could be hanged for theft.

Outlaws: people who ran away from their crimes were no longer protected by the law and could be hunted down and killed by anyone. People were persuaded to kill outlaws.

Beheading and hanging were used for treason but rarely.

Oaths on the bible

Humiliation (stocks and pillory) in public for minor crimes

Punishment acted as a deterrent for criminals snd retribution to make criminals pay for what they did. 

Law enforcement

Tithings: a group of ten men over 12 years age who were responsible for each others actions. If one committed a crime, the others brought


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