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Re: archers and fingers

Poster: "S. M. Thorson" <smt2@st-andrews.ac.uk>

Lyanna wrote:

> more than legend.  There is the medieval custom that a dead noble is
> worth as much as a dead peasant
> which is nothing.  Meaning that those who weren't rich like the knights
> and other
> assorted baronage and men-at-arms wearing expensive armor weren't
> ransomed or captured-
> they were killed. 

Well, I can neither confirm nor deny the rumour about mutilating archers,
but how much a dead noble was worth depended very much on where/when you

In Anglo-Saxon England, for instance, or in many parts of Germany for a
longer time, a dead noble had a legally specified price, called a wergeld
(lit. man-money), which his family was entitled to collect from the
individual (or family of same) who killed him.  Peasants too had wergeld,
but theirs was much less than a noble's. 

Of course, *collection* could be a problem, but that's another topic.

Stephanie M. Thorson			|  SCA: Lady Alianora Munro
Dept. of Scottish History		|  Clan White Wing
University of St Andrews		|  Tarkhan, Khanate Red Lion

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