Monday, March 13, 2006

# Posted 4:16 PM by Patrick Belton  

AMONGST THE LAWS OF WHICH THE IRISH STATUTE BOOK WILL SHORTLY BE IMPOVERISHED, the Tippling Act 1735, which prohibits a publican from pursuing a customer for money owed for any drink given on credit. Also the Adulteration Of Coffee Act 1718, making it illegal to debase coffee for profit. Note that OxBlog will lead the rearguard resistance to keep both of these on the books.

However, lest I be seen as too unconflicted a legal nostalgist, in the striking of the laws against witchcraft I can at least be permitted some particular luxuriation. In October 1446, Mariot de Belton (together with Isabella Brome, whom I'm sure was a much less attractive and well-heeled witch), was convicted of witchcraft and admitted to compurgation. The annals record 'Quod est sortilega, et quod qtitur illa arte, et dicit mulieribus solutis, nubere volentibus, quod faciat eas habere quos affectant et desiderant habere. Negat, et habere ad purgandum se cum xij manu. Similiter imponitur Isabellae. Negat, et habere as purgandum cum iiij manu.'

I am quite glad to see that at long last, the de Beltons may return to our traditional occupation of selling love potions. Please do write if you'd like one.
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