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Six Obscure Rules That Are Still Law In The Uk

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http://i100.independent.co.uk/article/six-obscure-rules-that-are-still-law-in-the-uk--lJTphs05ve

Government lawyers are preparing to change archaic rules which made it illegal to ‘impede escape from a shipwreck’ and to make ‘assaults with intent to obstruct the sale of grain’ in the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.

Perhaps they should look over these obscure legal oddities, too…

1. Armour in parliament

Despite often-heated debates, according to the 1313 Statute forbidding Bearing of Armour, MPs are not allowed to wear a suit of armour in Parliament.

2. Planks of wood

Under the Metropolitan Police Act 1839, it is illegal to carry a plank along a pavement. The Act also forbids flying kites, playing annoying games, and sliding on snow in the street. Killjoys!

3. Drinking with animals

Under the Licensing Act 1872, it is illegal to be drunk in charge of a horse. This Act also bans being drunk in charge of a carriage, cow or steam engine.

4. Pigsties on the pavement

Most neighbours will be happy that, according to the Town Police Clauses Act 1847, it is an offence to keep a pigsty in front of your house or to slaughter cattle in the street.

5. Carpet beating

Under the same Act, it is illegal to beat or shake any carpet or rug in any street. That said, the beating or shaking of a doormat is allowed before 8am.

6. Drinking in pubs

Worryingly for many, it is illegal to be drunk on licensed premises. The Licensing Act 1872 states: “Every person found drunk… on any licensed premises, shall be liable to
a penalty.”

So it's illegal to be drunk in a pub!

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The original, more extensive, source on which that article is based...

lawcommission.justice.gov.uk/docs/Legal_Oddities.pdf

And, yes, it is illegal to kill Welsh and Scottish people with longbows, regardless of the day of the week, and compulsory archery practice was taken off the books by the 1960 Betting and Gaming Act.

The legal status of women eating chocolate on public transport is hazy.

Edit: and handling salmon in suspicious circumstances is right out.

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Is this one still going then?

525px-Le_droit_du_Seigneur_by_Vasiliy_Po

Droit du seigneur

legal rights allowing the lord to spend a night and have sexual relations with a subordinate woman. The putative rights are known also as jus primae noctis mainly when they include the notion of "first night".[1]

According to the most known variant, it was an alleged legal right allowing the lord of a medieval estate to take the virginity of his serfs' daughters.

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It's illegal to be served alcohol in a pub if you're drunk.

What's the definition of "drunk" in this context though? Certainly "totally wasted" is drunk but "above the drink-driving limit" isn't necessarily.

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Selling alcohol to someone who is drunk

It is illegal to knowingly sell alcohol, or attempt to sell alcohol, to a person who is drunk. It is also illegal to allow alcohol to be sold to someone who is drunk.

https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/controlling-the-sale-and-supply-of-alcohol/supporting-pages/we-want-to-curb-hazardous-drinking

Dunno. It is also an offence for a person to knowingly get, or try to get, alcohol for a drunken person on a licensed premises



You'd think we'd all be very sober really wouldn't you.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-25749919


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Is this one still going then?

525px-Le_droit_du_Seigneur_by_Vasiliy_Po

Droit du seigneur

legal rights allowing the lord to spend a night and have sexual relations with a subordinate woman. The putative rights are known also as jus primae noctis mainly when they include the notion of "first night".[1]

According to the most known variant, it was an alleged legal right allowing the lord of a medieval estate to take the virginity of his serfs' daughters.

Never the law in this country. Possibly some part of France.

edit typo

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Never the law in this country. Possibly some part of France.

edit typo

Which is presumably why it's known to history as Droit du seigneur and not First dibs.

Chas Heston made an academically scrupulous documentary about the practice...

In fairness, in spite of it looking like Normans and Indians at times, the haircuts are spot on.

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Which is presumably why it's known to history as Droit du seigneur and not First dibs.

Chas Heston made an academically scrupulous documentary about the practice...

In fairness, in spite of it looking like Normans and Indians at times, the haircuts are spot on.

Ironically that film was recommended to me by David Luscombe Professor of Mediaeval History at the University of Sheffield back in the 1970s as one of the better cinematic representations of Europe in the early feudal era.

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Ironically that film was recommended to me by David Luscombe Professor of Mediaeval History at the University of Sheffield back in the 1970s as one of the better cinematic representations of Europe in the early feudal era.

I wouldn't disagree with that. Not that the competition was/is particularly gruelling. It nails feudalism down nicely and portrays Norman knights as the gangsterish enforcers they arguably were.

Edit: the academically scrupulous crack I made at the film was inspired by my suspicion/understanding that droit du seigneur is a myth.

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I have also heard that droit de segnur is a myth.

However, I have my eye on a cheap Lord of the Manorship that is up for sale at auction, and if investigations of the wenches of the Manor show that they are toothsome, I may put in a bid.

So sssssshhh.

(Sorry about the cod Olde English, I'm trying to get into character for the ravishings)

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Ironically that film was recommended to me by David Luscombe Professor of Mediaeval History at the University of Sheffield back in the 1970s as one of the better cinematic representations of Europe in the early feudal era.

Working on a hunch, and the parallels with another favourite historical epic Spartacus, I just had a quick peek to see if the writer(s) of The War Lord was connected with any of the Hollywood Ten.

It took all of ten seconds to discover that the writer Millard Kaufman was a mate of Donald Trumbo who was blacklisted for Un-American activities in the 50s and subsequently controversially re-employed by Kirk Douglas to write Spartacus in the 60s.

In The War Lord and Spartacus you're basically looking at not too subtle, class-conscious, leftist narratives (in the same vein as the droit du seignur myth) being presented to 1960s cinema audiences in the guise of historical epics. As such, they're arguably also representations of much more recent history, as well as feudal/ classical times.

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It is also illegal to rub whale blubber into a mare's hind quarters while wearing a petticoat (the blubber-rubber, not the horse).

is that on the dark web somewhere?

does seem a bit kinky for mainstream porn!

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Is it illegal to hang a monkey..?

XYY

I believe in some states of the US it's still an offence to sport a moustache that makes people laugh in church.

..in arizona putting salt on a railway track is still punishable by death.

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I wouldn't disagree with that. Not that the competition was/is particularly gruelling. It nails feudalism down nicely and portrays Norman knights as the gangsterish enforcers they arguably were.

Edit: the academically scrupulous crack I made at the film was inspired by my suspicion/understanding that droit du seigneur is a myth.

The gangster comparison is very near to the truth. The seignurial system was essentially a protection racket. The peasants paid dues to the feudal lord who in return provided the armed muscle to stop other members of the same warrior caste from robbing them. I am not sure the Lord needed any legal 'rights' to get his share of peasant women and serving girls. His social status in the medieval hierarchy would have done all the work for him.

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