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Thursday June 13th 2019Tim Candler9

 

    In Anglo Saxon Law, there wasn't so much Criminal Law, rather it was a Civil Law where the remedy for wrong behavior was a fine of some sort paid to the injured party by the wrongdoer. Amongst the Angles and Saxons this civil law varied from clan to clan and between clans, but the point was to find a remedy that worked agreeably to the general opinion without ending up with endless very expensive blood letting feuds that didn't really get anything like a just or lasting solution. When Alfred, a Christian king of the Saxons, took control he followed the tradition of Saxon kings by presenting his own set of the various customs and practices of remedy for wrongdoing and in his codes of law which was written in The Book of Doom, as it was called, appeared for the first time in Saxon history the Ten 'thou shalt not' Commandments of Moses. One of the elements of wrongdoing that varied from region to region was the distinction between Intentional Injuries and Unintentional Injuries. In time a body of Civil Law developed in Britain and so did a body of Criminal Law. The distinction civil and criminal is really the difference between an offence against the person and an offense against a rule or law imposed by a state. In Civil Law the rules of evidence include an idea that goes back to the German tribes which was the person most believable wins the suit and this rule is now days referred to as "a preponderance of evidence." In the 'thou shalt not' Criminal Law, the rules of evidence are supposed to demand much better than "a preponderance of evidence"

 

Past

   Worth mentioning the harm has to be recognizable and acceptable harm, the Tort is the behavior resulting in harm, a Tortfeasor, a wonderful word, is the person whose behavior resulted in harm, and the Injured Party is the injured party. With respect to intentional injuries and unintentional injuries, the English Law of Torts has some opinions. A person is assumed to have certain obligations toward other people, in other words we're supposed to put some thought into the possible consequences of our actions. When we intentionally cause harm it's a qualitatively different behavior to a harm caused unintentionally. But because we have an obligation to consider the possible consequences of our action a tortfeasor who causes unintentional harm remains obliged to remedy the harm. Proving harm is fairly straightforward but Proving an Intentional Tort is a burden not easy to carry. At the same time, if the injured party believes they were deliberately harmed, it's harder for the injured party to shake hands and forget about it.  And the point about laws, rules, customs, practices and so on, is the preservation of civil society from the top to the bottom. It allows everyone in a society to feel safer from the predation of others, living together on earth becomes fairer, more purposeful, more Just and less cynical if you like, it provides a sense of participation and you can say what you like about Alfred pretending to be the first King of the English and putting the ten commandments into his code of laws, inventing the lantern, he understood this. I think even Hamilton knew this. We didn't live as long back then of course.

  

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