Questions tagged [law]

A written and accessible code of behavior which is enforced by a powerful entity (almost always a state actor). Part of this code includes the entities responsible for maintaining and interpreting the written statutes, the punishments that can be applied in the case of the violation of the stated rules, and the means for determining guilt and innocence of parties suspected of violating any aspect of the aforementioned laws.

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How common were marital duels in medieval Europe?

On social media, I came across a post claiming that in medieval Germany spouses could settle a divorce outside of court, civic or religious, through trial by combat! Naturally, I was shocked (the ...
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Was New Hampshire's prohibition on non-Protestant officeholders enforced in the last decades of its existence?

In the context of Jewish History, it is often said that New Hampshire was the last state to remove legal disabilities on Jews in 1877 (which technically pushes the US quite far down the timeline for ...
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How did the Indian Appropriation Act of March 3, 1871 pass into law?

Many histories (including the Wikipedia article) state that Congress passed the Indian Appropriation Act of March 3, 1871. Did President Grant ever sign this law? I'm trying to figure out how it ...
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Did legal interracial marriage hit a nadir that was above 50% in 1948?

Did legal interracial marriage hit a nadir that was above 50% in 1948? Explain XKCD for this comic, which is currently down so I'm using an archive... said: Since the establishment of the United ...
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Did the Temperance Movement affect the illegalization of cannabis?

Considering cannabis was being illegalized in many states during the time the Temperance Movement succeeded in their prohibition of alcohol, it seems likely to me that they had some role in it? If ...
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Why did the British Empire try to criminalize cannabis in India three times when they had good experience with its taxation?

The British Empire passed a taxation act on cannabis in India in 1798, apparently for the well-being of the natives. What the most likely motivation behind the taxation act is, I don't know. In 1838, ...
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Why was cannabis illegalized in the U.S.?

There seems to be a notion that cannabis was illegalized due to capitalism. I've read some theories as to how this happened, and one of them goes something like this: Commissioner of the National ...
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When did "killing" become wrong in society? [closed]

It occurred to me that in many medieval settings, people getting killed is just a part of life. If you angered a feudal lord or noble, they could cut off your hands or kill you and no one bats an eye. ...
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When did banishment/exile cease to be enforceable, if it ever was?

Reading historical accounts, it is not infrequent to read about exiled persons, from Trotsky to the Puritans leaving England. And, nowadays, some look wistfully to legal ways to get rid of their ...
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Why are there laws that are used to limit how long a house can be in a family?

Wikipedia on the "Rule against Perpetuities" says that it was sometimes used to restrict how long one family could hold onto a, possibly aristocratic, estate. Lastly, the rule against ...
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When and why did the use of the lifespans of royalty to limit clauses in contracts come about?

I am in the process of attempting to buy a house in the UK; as it has stood for about a hundred years, the deeds feature some unusual clauses. For example, this conveyance from 1921: (Subject to any ...
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Was there a US state where video games were banned by accident?

I remember reading about some US state that banned video games up until something like the mid-seventies, not intentionally, but as collateral damage of a vaguely worded law intending to ban slot ...
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Under primogenture in 12th century France, if the eldest son predeceases his father, did the grandson or an younger son inherit?

Okay so I'm not sure how to word this eloquently, I'm sorry, but please bear with me. Let's say that a lord, eg. a Duke had two sons. The older one got married, had a male heir, and then died while ...
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How did German unification affect existing sentences for criminal convicts?

The German reunification of 1990 was legally the annexation of West Berlin (a separately administered occupied territory) and East Germany (the German Democratic Republic, or GDR) by West Germany (the ...
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Could a person in Victorian UK be in charge of their own money at 18 years old?

Could a male or female in Victorian UK be in charge of his or her own money at 18 years old? (Circa 1888) Could a legal guardian argue in court that since the age of majority was 21, he should be in ...
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When were weapons banned at the Thing assemblies in Norway?

First the attendants of the assemblies used the clashing of their swords and shields as an expression of their agreement, but later on weapons at the Thing assemblies were banned and the meaning of &...
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When did one-way mirrors become widely used by police?

Watching the BBC TV series "Life on Mars", the premise of which is that a time-travelling cop from 2000s England is transported back in time to the 1970s, where he is continually confounded ...
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Are there any accounts written by torturers on their actions?

Often, in antiquity, rulers would order some horrific things to happen like extreme torture, flaying and so forth. The Hongwu Emperor ordered 5000 women flayed alive for instance. Obviously the rulers ...
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1answer
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Why didn't Justice Robert Jackson just finish his 2-year law degree, when he already completed his first year?

Philip Halpern. Stanford Law Review, Dec., 1955, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Dec 1955), pp. 3-8. JSTOR. p 3. Robert Jackson was born February I3, 1892, on a small farm near Spring Creek in Warren County, ...
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How was Enguerrand VII de Coucy able to keep his allegiance to both king of England and France during the Hundrend Years War?

I was trying to do some research on the subject of feudal contracts. I found some example contracts here. This contains two contracts and one oath of fealty which as I understand it is part of the ...
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How did smaller feudal vassal realms survive a war or raid?

Say you're a knight or baron or just generally a landowner who swears fealty to a much more higher title than you. One day a war breaks out between a rival realm or raiders from a more tribal-like one ...
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Were Draco’s laws particularly “draconian” at the time they were enacted?

There is a lot of talk about “draconian” laws at the moment, which got me thinking about Draco. As I understand it, Draco produced the first written constitution of Athens, which stood for about 30 ...
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In Indian census, were the children of a Thug recorded as "Yet to Be Thug"?

I read (can't remember where at the moment) that in a population census (probably around 1911) the child of a thug used to be recorded as "yet to be thug" in profession column in India. ...
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What are some good references for the history of legal business entities? [closed]

I'm looking for books and articles that can elucidate how different legal business entities and types of corporate personhood came to be. I've already found the book “The Company: A Short History of a ...
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Who had the shortest time in going from imprisonment to head of state within democratic processes?

We know that for example Mandela, Hitler, Stalin all spent some time in prison before they went on to become the head of their respective state or government. Regardless of the reason why they were ...
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When the 'speedy trial' amendment was written, how long did trials usually take?

The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution promises "the right to a speedy and public trial," to prevent the accused from being held without a conviction for a long pretrial period. What ...
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Why can I visit battlefields, but not battleships?

Why are warships declared as war graves prohibiting divers from even visiting them (let alone entering them or taking artifacts) and yet I as a pedestrian I can freely visit the Somme or any other ...
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How did private property work in medieval France?

Were you required to purchase a land deed to get permission from the ruler of the area, or could you build wherever you wanted? If the latter is how it worked throughout Europe for the most part, I ...
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Were there any specific laws/treaties enshrining the Principle of Distinction in the 18th century?

Hathaway and Shapiro (2017): By the middle of the eighteenth century, European armies had come to recognize a “Principle of Distinction,” the doctrine central to modern humanitarian law, which ...
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Why were Royal Navy ships forbidden to attack the ARA Veinticinco de Mayo in Argentinian waters?

I watched this video on the British hunt for the Argentinian aircraft carrier ARA Veinticinco de Mayo, during the Falklands war. Involved, among other ships, was the Royal Navy nuclear submarine HMS ...
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Could women make contracts in ancient Rome? [closed]

I'm writing a story and the main character is a wealthy widow who runs the estate for her rather lazy son. Could women in ancient Rome (specifically the 3rd Century Empire) legally make contracts, or ...
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Having had his policy judged unlawful, which Home Secretary asked to meet Lord Bingham to discuss?

I quote p 27, in the Winter 2018 Issue 13 of the Hong Kong Student Law Gazette. The tension between executive and judiciary exists in many jurisdictions practising separation of powers, and the UK ...
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Was Mark Twain's book 'The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn' banned in the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany)?

I am currently studying the film Barbara directed by Christian Petzold for my undergraduate dissertation. This film is based in the former German Democratic Republic=GDR (East Germany). The ...
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What sources describe the ending of the right to murder family members in 1st century BC Rome?

The right to murder family members ended in the first century BC, although, even then, they kept a few exceptions. Now, the law said, fathers could only murder their sons if they’ve been convicted of ...
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Why are there so many laws about eye injuries in the Code of Hammurabi?

Why are there so many laws about eye injuries in the Code of Hammurabi? (And so few laws about other body parts injuries.) I want to concentrate on injuries mentioned as the crimes of physical ...
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Why did the form Baron OF Somewhere drop out of use?

The Question In the various British peerages - i.e. the peerages of England, Scotland, Ireland, Great Britain and the United Kingdom - one finds titles of the form Duke of X, Marquess of X and Earl ...
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Who was Jack Hagler? As amended by chapter 87-24, Laws of Florida, this section shall be known and may be cited as the “Jack Hagler Self Defense Act.”

Who is Jack Hagler? Why is he mentioned in this law, the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act? I tried to find out information but nothing relevant came up. https://duckduckgo.com/?q=Jack+Hagler&ia=web
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Are there any examples of retrial for longer prison sentences?

Today I've read in 'Journey into the Whirlwind' by Eugenia Ginzburg, that prisoners in the USSR could be re-sentenced. They had been accused and found guilty of a crime (usually counter-revolutionary ...
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Are there pictures of a chancellor behind a lattice? [closed]

Are 1 and 2 are referring to the same type of chancellor? Anyways, are there pictures fictional or non-fictional for each? chancellor | Origin and meaning of chancellor by Online Etymology Dictionary ...
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What happens to interned military personnel if war is declared post-internment?

Here is a real-world example during World War I. The German ship SMS Geier sails to neutral port in Hawaii in 1914, territory of the United States. Since the USA and Germany are not at war, the ship ...
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Is there a historical explanation as to why the USA people are so litigious compared to the French?

I'm French and I often hear that people in USA tend to sue for almost anything. I don't hear the same about countries neighboring France (Spain, Italia, Belgium, etc..) and, since a good part of USA ...
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Why was compulsory vaccination abandoned in the UK?

There is currently talk in the UK of making school attendance conditional on vaccination. Similar schemes operate in various places around the world now. Vaccination against smallpox was compulsory ...
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Had there been instances of national states banning harmful imports before the mid-19th C Opium Wars?

Background To my current understanding, James Matheson in his »The British trade with China« argued that China might have originally had the right to refuse trading with Britain, but that they lost ...
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How were de jure lands determined during the Middle Ages in Western Europe?

I was continuing my research on the strained relationship of France and England during the Middle-Ages. As I was reading up on Philip II Augustus of France in Wikipedia I stumbled upon this: The ...
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How was ownership of property managed during the Black Death, when so many original owners had died?

Historically, in the UK if a property owner died intestate with no heirs, the property ownership went to the Crown under an escheat. During the Black Death, in the 12th century, the population of ...
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What were the rules of the migration to the Louisiana Territory in USA?

To my best knowledge, at the point of Louisiana Purchase, the area was inhabited mostly by Native Americans. At the time there existed some legislation regarding how the settlement should look like. ...
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Why was "leaping into the river" a valid trial outcome to prove one's innocence?

The second law of the Code of Hammurabi states: 2 If any one bring an accusation against a man, and the accused go to the river and leap into the river, if he sink in the river his accuser shall ...
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Was it illegal to blaspheme God in Antioch in 360.-410.?

We know that the Roman Empire became a Christian state. Was it illegal to blaspheme God in Antioch in 360.-410.? What punishment was prescribed (if it was illegal)? If it was punishable, who could ...
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What is the history of the university asylum law?

I fear this question may be rather broad and I would like help to narrow it down. Currently a debate is ongoing in Greece regarding the law preventing police from stepping into university campuses. ...
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Why were Law Lords created peers of different ranks?

I cross-referenced the men below with List of law life peerages to check that these Law Lords were created life peers, and didn't inherit peerage. Most Law Lords are created as Barons, but note the ...

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