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3.6. Of ſundrie punishments appoynted for malefactors. Cap. 6.

Of ſundrie punishments appoynted for malefactors. Cap. 6.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 2 3 4 THe greateſt and moſt gréeuous puniſh|ment vſed in Englãd, for ſuch as offend EEBO page image 117 againſt the ſtate, is drawne from the priſone to the place of execution vpon an hardle or Sled, where they are hanged til they be half dead, and then taken downe and quartered, after that their mẽbers and bowels are cut from their bodies, and throwne into a fire prouided neare hand and within ſight, euen for the ſame purpoſe. Sometimes if the treſ|paſſe be not the more hainous, they are ſuf|fred to hang til they be quite dead, and when ſo euer any of the Nobilitie are conuicted of high treaſon, this maner of their death is cõ|uerted into the loſſe of their heads onely, not|withſtanding that the ſentence doe runne af|ter the former order. In triall of caſes cõcer|ning treaſon, fellonie, or any other gréeuous cryme, the partie accuſed doth yelde yf he be a noble man to be tryed by his Péeres: if a gentleman, by gentlemen: and an inferiour by God and by the countrie: and being con|demned of fellonie, manſlaughter. &c. he is eftſoones hanged by the necke til he be dead, and then cut downe and buryed. But yf he be conuicted of wilfull murder, he is eyther hanged aliue in chaynes néere the place where the facte was commytted, (or elſe firſt ſtrangeled with a rope) and ſo continu|eth till his bones conſume to nothing. We haue vſe neither of the whéele nor of ye barre, as in other countries, but when wilfull man|ſlaughter is perpetrated, beſide hanging the Offendour hath his right hande commonly ſtricken of at the place where the acte was done, after which he is led foorth to the place of execution, & there put to death according to the law. Vnder the worde fellonie are ma|nie grieuous crimes contained, as breche of pryſon An. 1. of Edward the ſecond. Diſfigu|rers of ye Princes lege people. An. 5. of Hen|ry the fourth. Hunting by nyght wyth pain|ted faces and Viſours An. 1. of Henry the ſe|uenth. Rape or ſtealing of women and may|dens An. 3. of Henry the eight. Conſpiracy a|gainſt the perſon of the Prince An. 3. of Hen|ry the ſeauenth. Embefilling of goodes com|mitted by the maiſter to the ſeruaunt, aboue the value of fourtie ſhillings. An. 17. of Hen|ry the eyght. Carying of horſes or mares in|to Scotland. An. 23. of Henry the eyght. So|domy and Buggery An 25. of Henrye the eyght. Stealing of Hawkes egges. An. 31. of Henry the eyght. Cõſuring, ſorcerie, Witch|crafte and digging vp of Croſſes. An. 33. of Henry the eyght. Prophecying vpõ armes, cogniſaunces, names, and badges. An. 33. of Henry ye eyght. Caſting of ſlanderous billes. An. 37. of Henry ye eyght. Wilfull killing by poyſon. An. 1. of Edward ye ſixt. Departure of a ſoldier frõ the field. An. 2. of Edward ye ſixt. Diminution of c [...]y [...], al offences within caſ [...] premunire, embeſeling of recordes, goodes taken frõ dead men by their ſeruaunts, ſtea|ling of whatſoeuer cattell, robbing by the high way, vpon the ſea, or of dwelling houſes letting out of pondes, cutting of purſes, ſtea|ling of Déere by night, counterfectous [...] coyne euidences, charters, and writings, & diuers other néedleſſe to be remembred. Per+iury is puniſhed by the pillorie, burning in the forehead wt the letter P. and loſſe of all ye mooueables. Many treſpaſſes alſo are puni|ſhed by ye cutting of one or both eares from the heade of the offendour, as the vtteraunce of ſedicious words againſt the maieſtrates, fraymakers, pettie robbers. &c. Roges are burned thorow the eares, caryers of ſhéepe out of the land by the loſſe of their hãds, ſuch as kill by poyſon are eyther ſkalded to death in lead or ſéething water. Heretiks are bur|ned quicke, harlottes & their mates by car|ting ducking and dooing of open pennaunce are often put to rebuke. Such as kill thẽſel|ues are buryed in the fielde with a ſtake dri|uen thorow their bodies. Witches are han|ged or ſometymes burned, but théeues are hãged euery where generally, ſauing in Ha|lifax where they are beheaded after a ſtrãge maner, & wherof I find this report. There is & hath ben of ancient tyme a law or rather a cuſtome at Halifax, that whoſoeuer doth cõ|mit any fellony: and is taken with the ſame, or confeſſe the facte vpon examination, yf it by valued by fower counſtables to amount to the ſomme of thirtéene pence halfe peny, he is forthwt beheaded vpon the next market day (which fall vſually vppon the tueſdayes, thurſdayes, and ſaterdayes,) or elſe vpon the ſame day yt he is ſo conuicted, yf market be then holdẽ. The engine wherwt the execution is done, is a ſquare blocke of wood of the len|gth of foure foote and an halfe, which doeth ryde vp and downe in a ſlot, rabet, or regall betwéene twoo péeces of timber, that are fra|med and ſet vpright of fiue yards in height. In the neather ende of the ſlyding blocke is an Axe keyed or faſtened wyth Iron into the wood, which being drawne vp to the top of the frame is there faſtned with a woodden pinne, (the one ende ſet on a péece of woodde, which goeth croſſe ouer ye two rabets, & the other ende being let into the blocke, holding the Axe, with a notche made into the ſame after the maner of a Sampſons poſt,) vnto the middeſt of which pinne there is a long rope faſtened that commeth downe among the people, ſo that when the offendour hath made his confeſſion, and hath layde his neck ouer the neathermoſt blocke, euery man EEBO page image 108 there preſent doth eyther take hold of ye rope, (or putteth foorth his arme, ſo néere to ye ſame as he can get, in token that he is willing to ſée true iuſtice executed,) and pulling out the pinne in this maner, ye head blocke wher|in the axe is faſtened doth fall downe wyth ſuch a violence that yf the necke of the tranſ|greſſour were ſo bigge as that of a bull, it ſhould be cut in ſunder at a ſtrocke, and roll from the bodie by an huge diſtaunce. If it be ſo that the offendour be apprehended for an oxe, or oxẽ, ſhéepe, kine, horſe, or any ſuch cat|tell: the ſelfe Beaſt or other of the ſame kinde, haue the ende of the rope tyed ſome|where vnto them, ſo that they drawe out the pin whereby the offendour is executed. And thus much of Halifax law, which I ſet down onely to ſhew the cuſtome of that country in this behalfe. Roges and vagabondes are often ſtocked and whipped, ſcoldes are duc|ked vpon cuckingſtooles in the water. Such fellons as ſtand mute and ſpeake not at their arraynement are preſſed to death by huge weightes, and theſe commonly holde theyr peace thereby to ſaue their goodes vnto their wyues and children, which yf they were con|demned ſhoulde be confiſcated to the prince. Théeues that are ſaued by their bookes and cleargie, are burned in the left hande, vppon the brawne of the thombe with an hote Irõ, ſo that yf they be apprehended agayne, that marke bewrayeth them to haue béene array|ned of fellonie before, whereby they are ſure at that time to haue no mercy. I do not read that this cuſtome of ſauing by the booke is vſed any where elſe then in Englande, ney|ther doe I finde after much diligent inquiry what Saxon Prince ordayned that lawe. Howbeit this I generally gather therof, that it was deuiſed at the firſt to traine the inha|biters of this lande to the loue of learning, which before contempned letters, & all good knowledge, as men only giuing themſelues to huſbandrie and the warres, the like wher|of I read to haue béene amongſt ye Gothes, & Vandales, who for a time woulde not ſuf|fer euen their princes to be learned for wea|kening of their courages, nor any learned men to remayne in the counſel houſe, but by open proclamation woulde commaunde thẽ to auoyde. Pyrates and robbers by ſea, are condemned in the court of the Admyraltie, & hanged on the ſhore at lowe water marke, where they are left til thrée tides haue ouer|waſhed them. Finally ſuch as hauing wals & bankes néere vnto the ſea, and doe ſuffer the ſame to decay (after cõuenient admonition) wherby the water entreth and drowneth vp the country: are by a certayne cuſtome ap|prehended, condemned & ſtaked in ye breache, where their remayne for euer as parcell of the foundation of the newe wall that is to be made vpon them, as I haue hard reported.

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